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Abstract

Objective—To determine prevalence of FeLV infection and serum antibodies against feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) in unowned free-roaming cats.

Design—Cross-sectional serologic survey.

Animals—733 unowned free-roaming cats in Raleigh, NC, and 1,143 unowned free-roaming cats in Gainesville, Fla.

Results—In Raleigh, overall prevalence of FeLV infection was 5.3%, and overall seroprevalence for FIV was 2.3%. In Gainesville, overall prevalence of FeLV infection was 3.7%, and overall seroprevalence for FIV was 4.3%. Overall, FeLV prevalence was 4.3%, and seroprevalence for FIV was 3.5%. Prevalence of FeLV infection was not significantly different between males (4.9%) and females (3.8%), although seroprevalence for FIV was significantly higher in male cats (6.3%) than in female cats (1.5%).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Prevalence of FeLV infection and seroprevalence for FIV in unowned free-roaming cats in Raleigh and Gainesville are similar to prevalence rates reported for owned cats in the United States. Male cats are at increased risk for exposure to FIV, compared with female cats. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002;220:620–622)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate a questionnaire for obtaining owner-perceived, weighted quality-oflife assessments for dogs with spinal cord injuries.

Design—Evaluation study.

Animals—100 dogs with spinal cord injuries and 48 healthy control dogs.

Procedures—The questionnaire was adapted from a questionnaire (the schedule for the evaluation of individual quality of life–direct weighting) used for human patients. Specifically, owners were asked to identify 5 areas or activities they believed had the most influence on their dogs' quality of life, assess their dogs' current status in each of those areas, and provide a weighting for the importance of each area. Results were used to construct a weighted quality-of-life score ranging from 0 to 100 for each dog. Owners were also asked to provide a quality-of-life score with a visual analog scale (VAS).

Results—A good correlation was found between weighted and VAS quality-of-life scores. Dogs with spinal cord injuries had weighted quality-of-life scores that were significantly lower than scores for control dogs. Quality-of-life areas and activities provided by owners of dogs with spinal cord injuries were similar to areas and activities provided by owners of healthy control dogs and could mostly be encompassed by 5 broader domains: mobility, play or mental stimulation, health, companionship, and other.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that the questionnaire could be used to obtain owner-perceived, weighted quality-of-life assessments for dogs with spinal cord injuries. Obtaining owner-perceived quality-of-life assessments for individual dogs should allow veterinarians to better address quality-of-life concerns and expectations of owners.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate changes over time in owner-perceived, weighted quality-of-life assessments in dogs with spinal cord injuries and determine whether scores were associated with underlying etiology or with veterinarian-assigned scores for severity of neurologic dysfunction.

Design—Cohort study.

Animals—100 dogs with spinal cord injury.

Procedures—Duration of dysfunction, modified Frankel neurologic injury score, and etiology were recorded. At initial and recheck (4- to 6-week) evaluations, owners were asked to identify 5 areas or activities they believed had the most influence on their dogs' quality of life, assess their dogs' current status in each area, and provide a weighting for the importance of each area; results were used to construct a weighted quality-of-life score. Owners were also asked to provide a quality-of-life score with a visual analog scale (VAS).

Results—At initial and recheck evaluations, weighted quality-of-life scores were higher for ambulatory than for nonambulatory dogs. However, scores did not differ among groups when dogs were grouped on the basis of underlying etiology or duration of injury. Dogs with an increase in Frankel score between the initial and recheck evaluations had a significant increase in weighted quality-of-life score, whereas for dogs that did not have any change in Frankel score, initial and recheck weighted quality-of-life scores were not significantly different.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that owner-assigned, weighted quality-of-life scores for dogs with spinal cord injuries did not vary significantly on the basis of underlying etiology or duration of injury but were higher for ambulatory than for nonambulatory dogs.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine long-term results and complications of gonadectomy performed at an early age (prepubertal) or at the traditional age in dogs.

Design—Cohort study.

Animals—269 dogs from animal shelters.

Procedure—Dogs that underwent gonadectomy were allotted to 2 groups on the basis of estimated age at surgery (traditional age, ≥ 24 weeks old; prepubertal, < 24 weeks old). Adoptive owner information was obtained from shelter records, and telephone interviews were conducted with owners to determine physical or behavioral problems observed in the dogs since adoption. Follow-up information was obtained from attending veterinarians for dogs with complex problems or when owners were uncertain regarding the exact nature of their dog's problem.

Results—Prepubertal gonadectomy did not result in an increased incidence of behavioral problems or problems associated with any body system, compared with traditional-age gonadectomy, during a median follow-up period of 48 months after gonadectomy. Rate of retention in the original adoptive household was the same for dogs that underwent prepubertal gonadectomy as those that underwent traditional- age gonadectomy. Infectious diseases, however, were more common in dogs that underwent prepubertal gonadectomy.

Conclusions and Clinical Implications—With the exception of infectious diseases, prepubertal gonadectomy may be safely performed in dogs without concern for increased incidence of physical or behavioral problems during at least a 4-year period after gonadectomy. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;218: 217–221)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To evaluate adequacy of analgesia provided by postoperative administration of butorphanol to cats undergoing onychectomy.

Design

Randomized controlled trial.

Animals

63 cats undergoing elective onychectomy.

Procedure

Cats were randomly assigned to a treatment (n = 42) or control group (21). Cats in the treatment group were given butorphanol parenterally immediately and 4 hours after surgery and orally for 2 days after surgery. Rectal temperature, heart rate, and respiratory rate were recorded and scores were assigned for temperament, recovery, sedation, analgesia, and lameness for the first 24 hours after surgery. Owners provided scores for appetite, personality, and lameness the first and second days after discharge from the hospital.

Results

Heart rate, respiratory rate, rectal temperature, and temperament and sedation scores were not significantly different between groups at any evaluation time. Recovery scores were significantly better for butorphanol-treated than for control-group cats 10 minutes after extubation. Analgesia scores were significantly better for butorphanol-treated than for control-group cats between 5 and 24 hours after surgery. Fewer butorphanol-treated than control-group cats were lame at the time of discharge from the hospital. The first day after discharge, owners reported that percentages of butorphanol-treated cats that ate normally, acted normally, and had only mild or no lameness were significantly higher than percentages of control-group cats that did. Significant differences between groups were not detected the second day after discharge.

Clinical Implications

Results suggest that for cats undergoing onychectomy, administration of butorphanol the day of surgery and the first full day after surgery provides effective analgesia and improves recovery, appetite, and gait. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;213:246-250)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

SUMMARY

Objective

To determine the cardiovascular effects of buprenorphine in isoflurane-and halothane-anesthetized dogs.

Animals

6 healthy adult hound-type dogs given buprenorphine (16 μg/kg of body weight, IV) or isovolumetric 5% dextrose solution during anesthesia with isoflurane or halothane.

Procedure

Each dog was anesthetized 4 times, with a minimum of 10 days between episodes. Anesthesia was induced with isoflurane or halothane in O2 by mask, and was maintained with 1.9% isoflurane or 1.3% halothane (end-tidal concentration). The Paco2 was maintained between 35 and 45 mm of Hg by use of mechanical ventilation, and the following variables were determined: systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial blood pressures; cardiac output; cardiac index; stroke volume; heart rate; systemic vascular resistance; mean pulmonary arterial pressure; and pulmonary vascular resistance. In addition, arterial blood samples for gas and acid-base analyses were collected at 30-minute intervals for 2.5 hours. After baseline values were recorded, dogs were randomly assigned to receive either buprenorphine (16 μg/kg, IV) or isovolumetric 5% dextrose solution. All variables were then recorded at 15-minute intervals for 2.5 hours.

Results

During isoflurane anesthesia, buprenorphine administration caused significant (P < 0.05) reductions in diastolic arterial pressure, mean arterial pressure, systolic arterial pressure, cardiac index, and heart rate, whereas systemic vascular resistance increased significantly. During halothane anesthesia, buprenorphine administration caused significant decreases in heart rate, cardiac index, mean, systolic and diastolic arterial blood pressures, and stroke volume, whereas pulmonary arterial blood pressure and systemic vascular resistance increased significantly.

Conclusion

Although the changes seen were significant, they were not sufficiently large to be of clinical importance in healthy dogs. (Am J Vet Res 1997;58:1280–1284)

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective

To determine pharmacokinetics, renal effects, and effect on atracurium-induced neuromuscular blockade of a high dose of gentamicin in isoflurane-anesthetized dogs.

Animals

6 healthy, adult, mixed-breed dogs, anesthetized twice and receiving gentamicin (6 mg/kg of body weight, IV) or saline solution.

Procedure

Blood samples were collected before and at intervals after gentamicin administration. Pharmacokinetic values were evaluated by use of multivariant stepwise linear regression analysis. Gentamicin-induced renal changes were assessed by comparing pretreatment and 12- to 24-hour posttreatment values for serum urea nitrogen, serum creatinine, urine creatinine-to-γ-glutamyltransferase ratio, and urinalysis. Neuromuscular blockade, maintained by atracurium infusion, was assessed, using the train-of-four response. At stable 50% depression of first twitch (T1) gentamicin or saline solution was given. Before and at posttreatment intervals for 60 minutes, T1% and fourth twitch-to-T1 ratio were recorded. The infusion was discontinued and 50 to 75% T1 recovery time was recorded. At 75% T1, edrophonium (0.5 mg/kg) was administered IV.

Results

Mean values for volume of distribution and clearance were 0.263 L/kg and 2.0 ml/min/kg, respectively. Mean maximal serum concentration of gentamicin was 46.4 μg/ml. Pre and posttreatment values for serum urea nitrogen, serum creatinine, urine creatinine-to-γ-glutamyltransferase ratio, and other urine analytes were not significantly different. Mean (± SD) values for T1% and fourth twitch-to-T1 ratio decreased significantly after gentamicin (depression was maximal at 5 minutes). Recovery time (50 to 75% T1) was not different between groups. Edrophonium restored twitch to baseline.

Conclusions

Mean values for apparent volume of distribution and total body clearance of gentamicin were similar to values in unanesthetized dogs. Mean maximal serum concentration of gentamicin was greater than that in unanesthetized dogs. Renal function was unaffected. Gentamicin potentiated atracurium-induced neuromuscular blockade, but did not affect recovery time. (Am J Vet Res 1996;57:1623–1626)

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Summary

Cancer in cats is being diagnosed with increasing frequency. Euthanasia or an active intervention such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or surgery are treatment choices for the owner at diagnosis of the cat's disease. In this study, 2 interviews with cat owners, one soon after diagnosis of cancer in the cat and one 6 months later, were used to identify owner characteristics associated with a decision of euthanasia or intervention, to identify factors associated with an owner's satisfaction with euthanasia or intervention, and to evaluate inappropriate expectations of the owners who selected an intervention. The study included 89 owners from 3 referral hospitals. In logistic regression analysis, significant factors were not found that affected the owner's decision to euthanatize the cat versus intervene. Satisfaction with the decision to euthanatize the cat was associated with the ability of the cat to groom itself, eat, and play at the first interview. Among owners who selected an intervention, 4 combinations of factors were associated with being satisfied. The first combination was clinic of origin (CLIN), having a live cat at the 6-month follow-up interview (LIVE), and understanding the number of return visits required for the intervention. The second was CLIN, LIVE, and type and frequency of adverse effects from the intervention at the 6-month interview. The third was CLIN, LIVE, and feeling guilty at the 6-month interview. The fourth was CLIN, LIVE, and whether the cat had a good or excellent quality of life at the first interview. Thirty percent (21/69) of the owners tended to overestimate their cats’ life expectancy. Owners also felt they had reasonably accurate estimations of adverse effects of treatment and number of return visits, but underestimated the costs required for an intervention.

For owners who elect an intervention, a reminder from the veterinarian that emotional upheavals may develop even after the decision has been made is important. To provide optimal patient care and client education, veterinarians must find a middle ground between being knowledgeable, practical, and informed, and being compassionate and approachable.

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Summary

A study was conducted to provide baseline data on pet dog diet and exercise patterns. In addition, the repeatability of a telephone questionnaire to determine these patterns was evaluated. Dogs seen at the Texas Veterinary Medical Center that, were less than 3 years old and of medium, large, or giant purebreeds or mixed-breeds were included. Information was collated about background variables, brands, quantities, and types of foods fed, and types and frequency of exercise. Daily intake of metabolizabk energy, calcium, fat, and protein were calculated from the diet. Sixty-nine dog owners completed the study. Most dogs were kept as pels in an urban/suburban environment Most were also fed diy food. About 60% were fed dog biscuits or some other dog snack or treat, and about half of the dogs in the study were Jed twice daily. Meat scraps and bones were the table foods most commonly fed. Most owners considered their dogs to be moderately or very active. Greater than 70% of the dogs were confined to a fenced yard. About 65% of the owners took their dogs for walks, forty percent of dogs in the study exercised with other dogs daily. More than half of the owners reported playing retrieving games with their dogs, including playing with a flying disk. The questionnaire was shown to be repeatable.

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Summary

A matched case-control study was conducted to evaluate dietary components and exercise patterns as potential risk factors for osteochondritis dissecans in dogs. A telephone interview, with a standard questionnaire and protocol, was used to collect data on dietary intake of calories and nutrients and on the usual amounts and types of exercise of each dog. Thirty-one dogs with osteochondritis dissecans and 60 controls were matched on the basis of breed, sex, and age. Using a conditional logistic regression model, high dietary calcium, playing with other dogs, and drinking well water (rather than city water) were associated with increased risk of osteochondritis dissecans. Feeding of specialty dry dog foods was associated with decreased risk.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research