Objective—To establish comprehensive reference ranges for plasma amino acid and whole blood taurine concentrations in healthy adult cats eating commercial diets and to evaluate the relationships of age, sex, body weight, body condition score (BCS), dietary protein concentration, and dietary ingredients with plasma amino acid and whole blood taurine concentrations.
Animals—120 healthy adult cats.
Procedures—Blood samples and a complete health and diet history were obtained for each cat, and reference intervals for plasma amino acid and whole blood taurine concentrations were determined. Results were analyzed for associations of age, breed, sex, body weight, BCS, use of heparin, sample hemolysis and lipemia, dietary protein concentrations, and dietary ingredients with amino acid concentrations.
Results—95% reference intervals were determined for plasma amino acid and whole blood taurine concentrations. A significant difference in amino acid concentrations on the basis of sex was apparent for multiple amino acids. There was no clear relationship between age, BCS, body weight, and dietary protein concentration and amino acid concentrations. Differences in amino acid concentrations were detected for various dietary ingredients, but the relationships were difficult to interpret.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—This study provided data on plasma amino acid and whole blood taurine concentrations for a large population of adult cats eating commercial diets. Plasma amino acid and whole blood taurine concentrations were not affected by age, BCS, or body weight but were affected by sex and neuter status. Dietary protein concentration and dietary ingredients were not directly associated with plasma amino acid or whole blood taurine concentrations.
Objective—To compare sensitivity and specificity of cytologic examination and 3 chromogen tests for detection of occult blood in cockatiel (Nymphicus hollandicus) excrement.
Animals—20 adult cockatiels.
Procedures—Pooled blood from birds was divided into whole blood and lysate aliquots. Excrement was mixed with each aliquot in vitro to yield 6 hemoglobin (Hb) concentrations (range, 0.375 to 12.0 mg of Hb/g of excrement). For the in vivo portion of the study, birds were serially gavaged with each aliquot separately at 5 doses of Hb (range, 2.5 to 40 mg/kg). Three chromogen tests and cytologic examination were used to test excrement samples for occult blood. Sensitivity, specificity, and observer agreement were calculated.
Results—In vitro specificity ranged from 85%to 100% for the 3 chromogen tests and was 100% for cytologic examination. Sensitivity was 0% to 35% for cytologic examination and 100% for the 3 chromogen tests on samples containing ≥ 1.5 mg of Hb/g of excrement. In vivo specificity was 100%, 90%, 65%, and 45% for cytologic examination and the 3 chromogen tests, respectively. Sensitivity was 0% to 5% for cytologic examination and ≥ 75% for all 3 chromogen tests after birds received doses of Hb ≥ 20 mg/kg. Observer agreement was lowest for cytologic examination.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Chromogen tests were more useful than cytologic examination for detection of occult blood in cockatiel excrement. The best combination of sensitivity, specificity, and observer agreement was obtained by use of a chromogen test.