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OBJECTIVE To determine whether walking at specific ranges of absolute and relative (V*) velocity would aid efficient capture of gait trial data with low ground reaction force (GRF) variance in a heterogeneous sample of dogs.

ANIMALS 17 clinically normal dogs of various breeds, ages, and sexes.

PROCEDURES Each dog was walked across a force platform at its preferred velocity, with controlled acceleration within 0.5 m/s2. Ranges in V* were created for height at the highest point of the shoulders (withers; WHV*). Variance effects from 8 walking absolute velocity ranges and associated WHV* ranges were examined by means of repeated-measures ANCOVA.

RESULTS The individual dog effect provided the greatest contribution to variance. Narrow velocity ranges typically resulted in capture of a smaller percentage of valid trials and were not consistently associated with lower variance. The WHV* range of 0.33 to 0.46 allowed capture of valid trials efficiently, with no significant effects on peak vertical force and vertical impulse.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Dogs with severe lameness may be unable to trot or may have a decline in mobility with gait trial repetition. Gait analysis involving evaluation of individual dogs at their preferred absolute velocity, such that dogs are evaluated at a similar V*, may facilitate efficient capture of valid trials without significant effects on GRF. Use of individual velocity ranges derived from a WHV* range of 0.33 to 0.46 can account for heterogeneity and appears suitable for use in clinical trials involving dogs at a walking gait.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To determine changes in the distal ends of the third metacarpal and metatarsal bones (MCIII and MTIII) of Thoroughbred racehorses that had sustained a catastrophic condylar fracture during highspeed exercise.

Sample Population—Fractured and contralateral MCIIIs and MTIIIs from 11 Thoroughbred racehorses that sustained a displaced condylar fracture during racing, both MCIIIs from 5 Thoroughbred racehorses euthanatized because of a catastrophic injury other than a condylar fracture, and both MCIIIs from 5 horses of other breeds that had not been professionally trained or raced.

Procedure—Macroscopic observations were made of the distal ends of the bones before and after digestion of the articular cartilage with NaOH.

Results—In all 11 racehorses with a displaced condylar fracture, the fracture was associated with a branching array of cracks in the condylar groove. In this region, fracture margins were smooth, and there was loss of subchondral bone. Comminution of the dorsal cortex was also seen. Parasagittal linear wear lines in the articular cartilage, erosions in the articular cartilage of the condyles, loss of the underlying subchondral bone, and cracking of condylar grooves were all more severe in the Thoroughbred racehorses than in the horses that had not been professionally trained or raced.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that condylar fractures in horses are pathologic fatigue or stress fractures that arise from a preexisting, branching array of cracks in the condylar groove of the distal end of MCIII or MTIII. (Am J Vet Res 2003;64:1110–1116)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research