The 2012 Emory Enrichment Extravaganza was great! I was so happy to represent LAWTE at this terrific event. The positive energy and the depth of caring that this group has for laboratory animal is truly inspiring. From primates to fish, there was so much good information. It is clear that there is a revolution in our industry of conscientious people who want to show the world that we take our obligation toward animal welfare very seriously.
Here are just a few of the key points that I took back to my home institution…
Did any of you know that a wire balloon whisk could be a great enrichment device??? Just fill it with hay and rabbits have a great source of nutrition and entertainment, without compromising their ability to be corprophagic. Milk jugs with a couple of small holes and little feed make great enrichment devices for pigs. Hours of fun without all of the dietary issues common with sweet treats. Pretty cool…especially at my budget conscious university.
Also, enrichment for fish!!! Now that is an area that I hadn’t really considered. And the best part was that Christian Lawrence spelled out how to sell the idea to your investigators using an argument that makes dollars and “sense” for them.
It was clear that the enrichment arena is expanding. We are getting more creative and more focused on innovative ideas that combine better living for our research animals with better data for our scientists. The world of research is changing. LAWTE and similarly minded individuals are showing that no one cares more about these animals or is working harder to improve their world.
Thanks for LAWTE’s support! I would encourage anyone who is able to attend an enrichment event. You will come away with some great ideas and a sense of pride for all of the good people in our industry.
Lisa M. Kelly, R-LATG