Effects of non-contact exposure to rodents on defensive behaviors in mice

Ernest D. Kemble, M. E. Whitehill, Amy M. Engstrom, Michael J Goblirsch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


These experiments explored the effects of non-contact exposure to two rodent species (rats and gerbils) on the defensive behaviors of male CD-1 mice. In Experiment 1 it was found that rats evoked substantial levels of defensiveness which were positively related to increases in rat activity. This effect was considerably attenuated, but still detectable, 30 min after rat exposure (Experiment 2). In Experiment 3 the effectiveness of rats and gerbils were compared. Gerbils were found to evoke a more modest increase in defensiveness than rats. These experiments indicate that non-contact exposure to rodents displaying varying levels of activity and, perhaps, propensity for predatory behavior provide a useful level of experimental control over the intensity of fear-like responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11-17
Number of pages7
JournalBehavioural Processes
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 1997


  • Defensive behaviors
  • Gerbils
  • Mice
  • Non-contact rodent exposure
  • Rats


Dive into the research topics of 'Effects of non-contact exposure to rodents on defensive behaviors in mice'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this