preferred orientation (parallel or perpendicular to motion) during travel (Eldridge et al., 1988; Kenny and Tarrant, 1987; Lambooy and Hulsegge, 1988; Tarrant et al., 1992). Based on the literature, a moderate stocking density for cattle and horses maximizes animal welfare (Swanson and Morrow-Tesch, 2001; Tarrant and Grandin, 2000).
There is abundant literature on the space requirements or stocking densities necessary to optimize the welfare of agricultural animals during transportation, but none on the most common species of research animals—rats and mice. Rodent vendors have developed space allowances for rodents on the basis of practical experience. When a regression of the space allowances for agricultural animals and rodents was performed (Table 3-5), the trend line (Figure 3-4) had a very high coefficient of determination (r2 = 0.9915). That value suggests that there is a mathematical algorithm that describes the transportation space required to maximize the well-being of group-transported animals, and it provides information on the transportation space required for unusual research animals for which space requirements are unknown. Transportation space requirements for guinea pigs and hamsters mandated in the Animal Welfare Act also follow the trend line; although they are not obviously based on empirical data, those space requirements might be appropriate. The algorithm would be useful to people who are attempting to determine the transportation space needs for an uncommon species of research animal for whose transportation there are neither guidelines nor much practical experience.
Most animals react to the experience of being transported by becoming anorexic and adipsic. The stressful experiences of a novel environment, movement of the transportation vehicle, and food and water sources that differ from those in the animal’s previous environment for logistical reasons inhibit food and water consumption. However, animals lose weight more rapidly when transported than they would normally during the same period without feed and water. That consequence implies that transportation is stressful for reasons beyond the lack of feed and water.
Provision of feed or water during transportation can be problematic because of food spoilage and water spillage; wetting of the floor by spilled water, which results in chilling, slipping, and injuries; animals’ lack of ability to eat or drink while in motion; motion sickness; and lack of motivation to eat or drink during the trip. Thus, providing food or water may not be of any benefit during short trips because of lack of motivation to consume food and water. Provision of feed and water during very long trips requires special attention, especially if the vehicle stops or has periods of stability during which animals may seek food and water. In