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Animal identification
Methods of rabbit identification
  1. James Oxley1 and
  2. Richard Saunders2
  1. 135 Farnes Drive, Gidea Park, Romford, Essex RM2 6NS e-mail:
  2. 2Bristol Zoological Society, Clifton, Bristol BS8 3HA and Rabbit Welfare Association and Fund, Enigma House, Culmhead Business Park, Taunton, Somerset TA3 7DY

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THERE are currently a number of different methods for identifying rabbits within a variety of contexts. However, despite the domestic rabbit being a popular pet (one million within the UK [Pet Food Manufacturers Association 2015]) and being widely used for laboratory work, there is limited up-to-date research and statistics associated with the advantages and disadvantages of each method and how methods vary between contexts.

Tattooing (usually on the inside of the external ear) is a method that has been frequently used in the past and is still used today. Tattooing is likely to cause pain during application, although it has been shown that anaesthetic cream can reduce pain in rabbits (Keating and others 2012). Tattooing is …

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