TABLE 3-2 Ambient Temperature Range for Safe Transportation of Common Adult Research Animalsa


Ambient Temperature Range for Safe Transportationb (°C)



4c to 34

Oufara et al., 1987


6c to 33

Depocas et al., 1957

Guinea pig

4c to 34

Himms-Hagen et al., 1995


4c to 33c

Cooper et al., 1980; Honda et al., 1962


6c to 34c

Jones et al., 1976; Pohl, 1965

Macaca mulatta

6c to 35

Oddershede and Elizondo, 1980, 1982


−10c to 28

Nagasaka and Carlson, 1965


−20 to 35d

FASS, 1999


5c to 30c

Adams, 1963; Hensel and Banet, 1982


−12c to 25

Horton, 1981

Beef cow

−18 to 23

Dairy cow

−15 to 26


5 to 25


5 to 25


−13c to 21

Schaeffer et al., 2001

aHumidity, wind chill, sun exposure, hydration state, physiological state, age, acclimation, and so on, can greatly influence these ranges (see Table 3-3). Professional judgment must be used in determining safe transportation of research animals.

bThe maximum and minimum temperatures of the range were derived from the upper limit and lower limit, respectively, of that species thermoneutral zone as described in Table 3-1, unless otherwise noted. Most larger mammals can be transported when the temperature is below freezing as long as the temperature inside the transport compartment does not cause frostbite or other signs of extreme cold. Conditions inside transport compartments, especially warm, deep bedding will allow animals to establish a microenvironment that is comfortable. Professional judgment should be used to assess risks to animal welfare when animals are preconditioned or not preconditioned for transport.

cTemperature derived from the lowest or highest temperature to which that species has been acclimated. It is possible that animals could be safely transported at more extreme temperatures; however, the literature neither supports nor negates the possibility.

dRecommended thermal conditions for swine.

conditions (Schrama et al., 1996). The age of the animal also influences the thermal conditions that are suitable for safe transport. As shown in Figure 3-2, young birds have a narrower TNZ than mature birds. Thus the temperature at which thermogenesis begins is higher in younger birds, making these animals more susceptible to cold.

The phenotypes of some animal strains and transgenic animals must also be considered when the animals have abnormal metabolic characteristics. Some pigs carry a mutation in a gene that causes malignant hyper-

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