I. Justification of the Analysis

II. Personnel

III. Care and Housing of Laboratory Animals

As a scientific {and professional} group, APA acknowledges the complexities of defining psychological well-being for each human and non-human animals. APA doesn’t present particular pointers for the upkeep of psychological well-being of analysis animals, as procedures which might be applicable for a specific species will not be for others. Psychologists who’re aware of the species, related literature, federal pointers, and their establishment’s analysis facility context ought to think about the appropriateness of measures akin to enrichment to take care of or enhance psychological well-being of these species. 

  1. The amenities housing laboratory animals ought to meet or exceed present rules and pointers (USDA, 1990, 1991; NIH, 2002) and are required to be inspected twice a yr (USDA, 1989, NIH, 2002). 

  2. All procedures carried out on nonhuman animals are to be reviewed by an institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) to make sure that the procedures are applicable and humane. The committee will need to have illustration from throughout the establishment and from the area people. In occasion that it’s not doable to represent an applicable IACUC within the psychologist’s personal establishment, psychologists ought to search recommendation and acquire assessment from a corresponding committee of a cooperative establishment. 

  3. Laboratory animals are to be supplied with humane care and healthful situations throughout their keep in any amenities of the establishment. Duties for the situations beneath which animals are saved, each inside and outdoors of the context of energetic experimentation or educating, rests with the psychologist beneath the supervision of the IACUC (the place required by federal rules) and with people appointed by the establishment to supervise laboratory animal care.

IV. Acquisition of Laboratory Animals

V. Experimental Procedures

Consideration for the humane therapy and well-being of the laboratory animal ought to be integrated into the design and conduct of all procedures involving such animals, whereas holding in thoughts the first objective of enterprise the precise procedures of the analysis mission—the acquisition of sound, replicable knowledge. The conduct of all procedures is ruled by Guideline I (Justification of Analysis) above. 

  1. Observational and different noninvasive types of behavioral research that contain no aversive stimulation to, or elicit no signal of misery from the nonhuman animal are acceptable. 

  2. Every time doable behavioral procedures ought to be used that decrease discomfort to the nonhuman animal. Psychologists ought to regulate the parameters of aversive stimulation to the minimal ranges appropriate with the goals of the analysis. Consideration ought to be given to offering the analysis animals management over the potential aversive stimulation at any time when it’s according to the targets of the analysis. Every time cheap, psychologists are inspired to first check the painful stimuli for use on nonhuman animal topics on themselves. 

  3. Procedures by which the analysis animal is anesthetized and insensitive to ache all through the process, and is euthanized (AVMA, 2007) earlier than regaining consciousness are usually acceptable. 

  4. Procedures involving greater than momentary or slight aversive stimulation, which isn’t relieved by remedy or different acceptable strategies, ought to be undertaken solely when the goals of the analysis can’t be achieved by different strategies. 

  5. Experimental procedures that require extended aversive situations or produce tissue harm or metabolic disturbances require larger justification and surveillance by the psychologist and IACUC. A analysis animal noticed to be in a state of extreme misery or continual ache that can not be alleviated and isn’t important to the needs of the analysis ought to be euthanized instantly (AVMA, 2007). 

  6. Procedures that make use of restraint should conform to federal rules and pointers. 

  7. Procedures involving using paralytic brokers with out discount in ache sensation require specific prudence and humane concern. Use of muscle relaxants or paralytics alone throughout surgical procedure, with out anesthesia, is unacceptable. 

  8. Surgical procedures, due to their invasive nature, require shut supervision and a focus to humane concerns by the psychologist. Aseptic (strategies that decrease dangers of an infection) methods have to be used on laboratory animals at any time when doable.  

    1. All surgical procedures and anesthetization ought to be performed beneath the direct supervision of an individual who’s educated and competent in using the procedures.  

    2. Until there may be particular justification for performing in any other case, analysis animals ought to be maintained beneath anesthesia till all surgical procedures are ended.  

    3. Postoperative monitoring and care, which can embrace using analgesics and antibiotics, ought to be offered to reduce discomfort, forestall an infection and promote restoration from the process.  

    4. Basically, laboratory animals shouldn’t be subjected to successive survival surgical procedures, besides as required by the character of the analysis, the character of the precise surgical procedure, or for the well-being of the animal. A number of surgical procedures on the identical animal have to be justified and obtain approval from the IACUC. 

  9. To attenuate the variety of nonhuman animals used, a number of analysis makes use of of particular person animals ought to be thought of. Such makes use of have to be appropriate with the targets of the analysis, sound scientific follow, and the welfare of the animal. 

  10. To make sure their humane therapy and well-being, laboratory animals usually will not be launched from institutional amenities. Nonhuman animals reared within the laboratory should not be launched into the wild as a result of, normally, they can not survive or they could survive by disrupting the pure ecology. Return of any wild-caught animal to the sector additionally carries dangers, each to the previously captive animals and to the ecosystem. 

  11. When euthanasia is acceptable, both as a requirement of the analysis or as a result of it constitutes essentially the most humane type of disposition of a nonhuman animal on the conclusion of the analysis:  

    1. Euthanasia have to be achieved in a humane method, applicable for the species and age, and in such a manner as to make sure rapid loss of life, and in accordance with procedures outlined within the newest model of the “AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) Guidelines on Euthanasia (2007) (PDF, 550KB).”  

    2. Disposal of euthanized laboratory animals have to be performed in accord with all related laws, according to well being, environmental, and aesthetic issues, and as authorized by the IACUC. No animal shall be discarded till its loss of life is verified.

VI. Area Analysis

Area analysis that carries a danger of materially altering the conduct of nonhuman animals and/or producing harm to delicate ecosystems is topic to IACUC approval. Area analysis, if strictly observational, might not require animal care committee approval (USDA, 2000). 

  1. Psychologists conducting subject analysis ought to disturb their populations as little as doable, whereas performing according to the targets of the analysis. Each effort ought to be made to reduce potential dangerous results of the research on the inhabitants and on different plant and animal species within the space. 

  2. Analysis performed in populated areas have to be accomplished with respect for the property and privateness of the inhabitants of the world. 

  3. Such analysis on endangered species shouldn’t be performed except IACUC approval has been obtained and all requisite permits are obtained (see IV.D of this brochure.)

VII. Instructional Use of Nonhuman Animals

Laboratory workout routines in addition to classroom demonstrations involving dwell animals are of nice worth as educational aids. Psychologists are inspired to incorporate instruction and dialogue of the ethics and values of nonhuman animal analysis in all related programs. 

  1. Nonhuman animals could also be used for academic functions solely after assessment by an IACUC or committee applicable to the establishment. 

  2. Consideration ought to be given to the potential of utilizing non-animal alternate options. Some procedures that may be justified for analysis functions will not be justified for academic functions.

It is very important acknowledge that this doc constitutes “pointers,” which serve a unique function than “requirements.” Requirements, in contrast to pointers, require obligatory compliance, and could also be accompanied by an enforcement mechanism. This doc is supposed to be aspirational in intent, and to offer suggestions for the skilled conduct of specified actions. These pointers should not meant to be obligatory, exhaustive, or definitive and mustn’t take priority over the judgment of people who’ve competence within the topic addressed.

APA has adopted separate pointers for using nonhuman animals in analysis and educating on the pre-college degree. View a replica of the APA Guidelines for the Use of Animals in Behavioral Projects in Schools (K – 12), or request a replica through email, by cellphone at (202) 336-6000, or in writing to the APA Science Directorate, Workplace of Analysis Ethics, 750 First St., NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242.

  1. American Psychological Affiliation. (2010). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct (2002, Amended June 1, 2010). Retrieved September 19, 2011. 

  2. American Veterinary Medical Affiliation (2007) AVMA Guidelines on Euthanasia (PDF, 550KB). Retrieved April 8, 2010. 

  3. Animal Welfare Act 7 U.S.C. § 2131 et seq. Retrieved April 8, 2010. 

  4. Nationwide Institutes of Well being Workplace of Laboratory Animal Welfare (2002). Public Health Service policy on the humane care and use of laboratory animals. Bethesda, MD: NIH. Retrieved September 27, 2011. 

  5. Nationwide Analysis Council (2006). Tips for the humane transportation of analysis animals. Washington, DC: The Nationwide Academies Press. 

  6. U. S. Division of Agriculture (1989) Animal welfare; Closing Guidelines. Federal Register, 54(168), (Aug 31, 1989), 36112-36163. 

  7. U. S. Division of Agriculture (1990) Guinea pigs, hamsters, and rabbits; Closing Rule. Federal Register, 55(136), (July 16, 1990), 28879-28884. 

  8. U. S. Division of Agriculture (1991) Animal welfare; Requirements; Half 3, Closing Rule. Federal Register, 55(32), (Feb 15, 1991), 6426-6505. 

  9. U. S. Division of Agriculture (2000) Area research; Definition; Closing Rule. Federal Register, 65(27), (Feb 9, 2000), 6312-6314.

Further Assets 
  1. Dess, N. Okay. & Foltin, R. W. (2004). The ethics cascade. In C. Okay. Akins, S. Panicker, & C. L. Cunningham (Eds.). Laboratory animals in analysis and educating: Ethics, care, and strategies. (pp 31-39). Washington, DC: APA. 

  2. Nationwide Institutes of Psychological Well being (2002). Strategies and welfare concerns in behavioral analysis with animals: Report of a Nationwide Institutes of Well being Workshop. Morrison, A. R., Evans, H. L., Ator, N. A. & Nakamura, R. Okay. (Eds.). NIH Publications No. 02-5083. Washington, DC: US Authorities Printing Workplace. 

  3. Nationwide Analysis Council (2011). Information for the care and use of laboratory animals. (eighth Version). Washington, DC: The Nationwide Academies Press. 

  4. Nationwide Analysis Council (2003). Tips for the care and use of mammals in neuroscience and behavioral analysis. Washington, DC: The Nationwide Academies Press. 

  5. Nationwide Analysis Council (2008). Recognition and alleviation of misery in laboratory animals. Washington, DC: The Nationwide Academies Press. 

  6. Nationwide Analysis Council (2009). Recognition and alleviation of ache in laboratory animals. Washington, DC: The Nationwide Academies Press.

Tips for Moral Conduct within the Care and Use of Nonhuman Animals in Analysis was developed by the American Psychological Affiliation Committee on Animal Analysis and Ethics in 2010-11. Members on the committee had been Gary Dunbar, PhD, Jennifer Higa, PhD, Theresa Jones, PhD, Barbara Kaminski, PhD, Scott Robinson, PhD, Rodney Swain, PhD, Pamela Scott-Johnson, PhD, Eric Wiertelak, PhD, and Sangeeta Panicker, PhD (Workers Liaison). Inquiries about these pointers ought to be made to the American Psychological Affiliation, Science Directorate, Workplace of Analysis Ethics, 750 First Road, NE, Washington, DC 20002, or through email.


Adopted by the APA Council of Representatives on February 24, 2012.

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