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Abstract

The most common cause of heart failure in dogs is myxomatous mitral valve disease (MMVD), which accounts for approximately 75% of canine heart disease cases and is especially common in smaller dogs. Although low-sodium diets have been recommended for humans with heart diseases for decades, there is little evidence to support this practice in dogs. In recent years, however, it has become clear that other nutrients are important to heart health. Dogs with heart disease secondary to MMVD experience patterns of metabolic changes that include decreased mitochondrial energy metabolism and ATP availability, with increased oxidative stress and inflammation. These changes occur early in disease and progress with worsening heart disease. Key nutrients that may support normal function and address these changes include omega-3 fatty acids, medium-chain triglycerides, magnesium, antioxidants including vitamin E and taurine, and the amino acids methionine and lysine. The long-chain omega-3 fatty acids provide anti-inflammatory, antithrombotic, and other benefits. Medium-chain fatty acids and ketones derived from medium-chain triglycerides provide an alternative energy source for cardiac mitochondria and help reduce free radical production. Magnesium supports mitochondrial function, normal cardiac rhythm, and provides other benefits. Both vitamin E and taurine counter oxidative stress, and taurine also has direct cardiac benefits. Dogs with MMVD have reduced plasma methionine. Methionine and lysine are important for carnitine production as well as other functions. This article reviews the evidence supporting the functions and benefits of these and other nutrients in MMVD and other cardiac conditions.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To describe the outcome of dietary management of canine noninfectious acute colitis with or without concurrent oral administration of metronidazole using a randomized controlled clinical trial.

ANIMALS

59 client-owned dogs with noninfectious acute colitis.

PROCEDURES

Dogs with acute noninfectious colitis were enrolled in a 30-day diet trial after exclusion of parasitic infectious etiologies (fecal centrifugation floatation, Giardia/Cryptosporidium antigen testing) and systemic disease (CBC, biochemistry, urinalysis). Dogs were randomized into 3 placebo-controlled groups: group 1, easily digestible diet + placebo tablet; group 2, easily digestible diet + metronidazole tablet; and group 3, psyllium-enhanced easily digestible diet + placebo tablet. Dogs were evaluated serially using fecal scoring for time to remission, average fecal score, relapse after remission, and dysbiosis index.

RESULTS

Median remission time was significantly different among the 3 groups (P < .01) with median times of 5 days (range, 4 to 10) for group 1, 8.5 days (range, 7 to 12) for group 2, and 5 days (range, 3 to 6) for group 3. Metronidazole addition affected the fecal dysbiosis index negatively at days 7 to 10. No adverse effects or complications were noted throughout the study.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

For canine noninfectious acute colitis, dietary management with an easily digestible diet with or without psyllium enhancement proved a superior management strategy compared to metronidazole. The omission of metronidazole reduced the adverse impact significantly on intestinal microbiota. Longitudinal clinical trials are necessary to compare the long-term response, stability, and complications associated with dietary management alone versus combined dietary and antimicrobial therapy for canine acute colitis.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To determine the effect of a starch-rich treat, added to the daily diet of ponies for 10 days, on enteroinsular responses to meal consumption.

ANIMALS

10 mixed-breed adult ponies owned by Queensland University of Technology were used in the study. Six ponies were metabolically healthy, and 4 were insulin dysregulated at the start of the study, according to the results of an in-feed oral glucose test.

PROCEDURES

A bread-based treat was offered twice daily for 10 days, adding 0.36 ± 0.04 g/kg body weight (BW) carbohydrates to the daily diet. Before and after treatment, the intestinal capacity for simple carbohydrate absorption was approximated with a modified D-xylose absorption test. Plasma glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2), blood glucose, and serum insulin responses to eating were also measured before and after treatment.

RESULTS

The absorption of D-xylose (area under the curve [AUC]) increased 1.6-fold (P < .001) after 10 days of eating the treat. In addition, while basal (fasted) GLP-2 concentrations were not affected, GLP-2 AUC increased 1.4-fold in response to eating (P = .005). The treat did not change blood glucose or serum insulin concentrations, before, during, or after eating.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

A small amount of additional carbohydrate each day in the form of a treat can cause a measurable change in the enteroinsular responses to eating.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

To evaluate the serum concentrations of myostatin and growth and differentiation factor 15 (GDF-15) in Alaskan Husky sled dogs participating in a 350-mile (560-km) race and in an older population, and to examine correlations between changes in serum concentrations and body condition scores (BCSs).

ANIMALS

Dogs were recruited from 3 teams of Alaskan Huskies participating in the Alaskan–Yukon Quest sled-dog race and retirees from a research sled-dog colony.

PROCEDURES

Serum samples and BCSs were collected prior to racing, midway, and postrace; and in an older cohort (13 to 14 years). Myostatin and GDF-15 concentrations were assessed using commercially available ELISA kits.

RESULTS

The median myostatin prerace concentration (9,519 pg/mL) was significantly greater than the mid- and postrace concentrations (7,709 pg/mL and 3,247 pg/mL, respectively). The prerace concentration was also significantly greater than that of the retired sled group dogs at 6,134 pg/mL. GDF-15 median serum concentrations did not change significantly across any racing time point (approx 350 pg/mL) or in the older cohort. No significant correlations were observed between changes in BCS and myostatin or GDF-15 concentrations.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Serum myostatin decreases dramatically, yet no correlations to loss of BCS could be found. Myostatin signaling may be involved in maintaining hypertrophic signaling during intense exercise. Neither racing distance nor geriatric/retirement status appears to have an effect on serum GDF-15 concentration. Myostatin was less in the older, retired sled dogs compared to the younger racing cohort. Such differences highlight the roles that fitness level and age play regarding myostatin levels.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

To compare initial titers, duration, and residual clinical protection of passively transferred bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) nasal immunoglobulin (Ig) G-1 and IgA, and serum neutralizing (SN) antibodies.

ANIMALS

40 three-month-old beef steers born either to unvaccinated or vaccinated cows.

PROCEDURES

During the last trimester of gestation, cows were assigned randomly to either vaccinated or unvaccinated groups. Calves were grouped on the basis of whether they nursed colostrum from unvaccinated dams (NO-VACC group; n = 20) versus dams vaccinated with 2 doses of an inactivated BRSV vaccine (VACC group; n = 20). At 3 months of age, calves were challenged with BRSV. Respiratory signs were scored. Nasal BRSV IgG-1 and IgA and SN antibodies were compared before and after the challenge. The presence of BRSV in nasal secretions was evaluated by reverse transcription-PCR assays.

RESULTS

Respiratory scores after BRSV challenge were similar between treatment groups. Nasal BRSV IgG-1 and SN antibodies were significantly greater in VACC calves at 48 hours of life; however, by 3 months of age, titers had decayed in both groups. Nasal BRSV IgA titers were minimal after colostrum intake and before the BRSV challenge, and increased in both groups after the challenge. The NO-VACC group had a significantly greater probability of shedding BRSV compared with VACC calves.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

At 3 months of age, titers of passively transferred BRSV antibodies in VACC and NO-VACC calves had decayed to nonprotective levels. Calves born to vaccinated dams had a decreased probability of BRSV shedding; however, this was not related to differences in SN or nasal BRSV antibody titers.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate the effects of ileocecocolic junction (ICJ) resection on gastrointestinal signs, biochemical parameters, and nutritional variables in dogs and cats.

ANIMALS

20 dogs and 15 cats that underwent ICJ resection between January 2008 and June 2020.

PROCEDURES

Medical records of dogs and cats that underwent ICJ resection were reviewed, and clinical signs, laboratory abnormalities, and nutritional information were obtained. Additional follow-up information was obtained by contacting primary care veterinarians or owners. A subset of dogs (n = 6) and cats (2) were evaluated in the hospital via clinical examination, clinicopathologic testing, nutritional testing, and abdominal ultrasound.

RESULTS

Twenty dogs and 15 cats underwent resection of the ICJ for treatment of a variety of conditions. Ten of 20 dogs (50%) and 11/15 cats (73%) were reported by their owners to have a good long-term outcome based on the lack of long-term gastrointestinal signs or the ability to control gastrointestinal signs with diet and supplements alone. Despite owner-reported good outcomes, long-term diarrhea, weight loss, and muscle loss were common. Of the 6 dogs evaluated in the hospital, 3/6 (50%) had muscle loss, 2/6 (33%) had low taurine concentrations, and 1 dog each had low cobalamin, folate, 25-hydroxyvitamin D, and ionized calcium. Neither of the 2 cats evaluated in the hospital had nutritional abnormalities identified.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Owners should be informed of the possibility of long-term gastrointestinal clinical signs and the potential need for long-term nutritional management after ICJ resection.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To identify genetic associations with primary glaucoma (PG) in American Cocker Spaniels using a genome-wide association study (GWAS).

ANIMALS

A nationwide ambidirectional case–control cohort study was performed in American Cocker Spaniels that had an ophthalmic examination performed by a veterinarian. Ninety-four dogs with PG (cases) and 111 dogs without glaucoma (controls) met phenotypic criteria and had a blood sample collected after receiving informed owner consent.

PROCEDURES

Genomic DNA was extracted from whole blood samples and genotyped (CanineHD BeadChip, Illumina Inc). A case–control GWAS using a linear mixed model was performed, and 3 significance thresholds were calculated (1) using a Bonferroni correction on all single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) included in the GWAS, (2) using a Bonferroni correction on only the unlinked SNPs from a pruned data set, and (3) using 10,000 random phenotype permutations.

RESULTS

Following genotype data quality control, 89 cases and 93 controls were included in the GWAS. We identified an association on canine chromosome (CFA10); however, it did not reach statistical significance. Potential candidate genes within the surrounding linkage disequilibrium interval include coiled-coil domain containing 85A (CCDC85A) and extracellular growth factor containing fibulin extracellular matrix protein 1 (EFEMP1).

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Primary glaucoma in the American Cocker Spaniel is a complex heterogeneous disease that may be influenced by a locus on CFA10. The candidate genes CCDC85A and EFEMP1 within the identified linkage disequilibrium interval have been shown to be involved in human open-angle glaucoma.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To describe the anatomic structures of the canine middle ear visible during endoscopic examination through ventral and lateral surgical approaches.

SAMPLE

5 cadaveric canine heads representing 4 breeds.

PROCEDURES

A descriptive study was performed. For each head, a lateral approach was performed on one side and a ventral approach was performed on the opposite side. Images were obtained with a 2.7-mm, 30° telescope.

RESULTS

Captured images were reviewed, and anatomic structures visualized through the lateral and ventral approaches were identified. The optimal approach, telescope position, and light post orientation to identify each anatomic structure were subjectively determined.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Middle ear evaluation with a telescope was technically straightforward and allowed identification of middle ear structures not typically visible with an open surgical approach. Findings may serve as an anatomic reference guide for future video-assisted surgical procedures of the middle ear. A better understanding of the location of anatomic structures in the middle ear may help to prevent unnecessary damage to fragile middle ear structures, such as nerves or blood vessels, during surgical procedures.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association