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In Italy use of animals for scientific or educational purposes is regulated by Legislative Decree 26/2014 (“Implementing Directive 2010/63/EU on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes”). The main objectives of the decree are 1) to limit the experimental use of animals to only cases where it is not possible to use alternative methods in order to obtain the desired result, and 2) prevent or eliminate temporary or prolonged pain, suffering, stress and damage to animals used in scientific experimentation.

The school of specialisation in Science and medicine of laboratory animals adequately prepares the veterinary practitioners who will work in this sector, respecting what is explicitly required by the decree: using animals will in fact be possible only under the careful supervision of a designated veterinary surgeon expert in laboratory animal medicine with specific skills; such specialized vet will also be responsible for the welfare of the animals used for experimental purposes.

The qualification required for admission is the degree in Veterinary Medicine; in addition, it is mandatory to hold the licence to practice in veterinary medicine.

The course of study has duration of 3 years with compulsory attendance to theoretical lessons, practices and vocational training.

Access to the school: written test (multiple choice test, intended to ascertain the general notions relating to the area of specialisation and knowledge of the key points of Legislative Decree 26/2014) and subsequent oral test.

Teaching is provided through lectures and practices one day a week and must be integrated by a practical internship/externship.


For further information, visit the UNIMI page.

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