Body Condition Scoring for Mice

Description of procedure:

Scoring the body condition of rodents is a non-invasive method for assessing health and establishing endpoints for adults where body weight is not a viable monitoring tool, such as with tumor models, ascites production and pregnancy, or for young growing animals.

Body condition scores (BCS) range from 1(emaciation) to 5 (obesity). An anticipated BCS of 2 – underconditioned – or lower, requires justification in the protocol.

Scores are determined by frequent visual and hands-on examination of each animal. The hands-on evaluation is done by gently holding the mouse by the base of the tail and passing a finger over the sacroiliac bones. The findings are matched to the descriptions and diagrams below to determine a score.

Body Condition Scoring

1. Ullman-Cullere, M.H. and Foltz, C.J. Body Condition Scoring: A Rapid and Accurate Method for Assessing Health Status in Mice. Lab. Animal Science; 49 (3) 319-323, 1999
2. IACUC Guidelines, University of California at San Francisco

BU IACUC Approved October 2008