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Abstract

OBJECTIVE To evaluate the effects of drinking nutrient-enriched water (NW) on water intake and indices of hydration in healthy domestic cats fed a dry kibble diet ad libitum.

ANIMALS 18 domestic shorthair cats.

PROCEDURES Group-housed cats were assigned to tap water (TW; n = 9) or NW (9) groups. All cats received TW at baseline (days −7 to −1). No changes were made to the food-water regimen for the TW group. The NW group received NW instead of TW from days 0 through 10, then received TW and NW in separate bowls (days 11 through 56). Food intake was measured through day 10; liquid consumed by drinking was measured throughout the study. Blood and urine samples were collected at predetermined times for analyses; 48-hour urine collection (days 28 through 30 or 31 through 33) was performed to assess output volume and aid endogenous creatinine-based glomerular filtration rate (GFR) determination. Data were analyzed with linear mixed-effects models.

RESULTS Baseline TW and calorie intake were similar between groups. The NW treatment was significantly associated with increased liquid consumption during the treatment phase. Mean urine output was significantly higher in the NW group (15.2 mL/kg/d) than in the TW group (10.3 mL/kg/d). Mean GFR (1.75 vs 1.87 mL/min/kg, respectively) did not differ between groups. Effects of treatment and time were each significant for urine specific gravity and osmolality and urine creatinine, phosphate, and urea nitrogen concentrations, with lower values for the NW group.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested that consumption of the NW can increase liquid intake and improve measures of hydration in healthy cats. These effects may offer health benefits to some cats in need of greater water consumption.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To characterize the postprandial nutrient profiles of exercise-conditioned dogs fed a supplemental carbohydrate and protein bar with or without astaxanthin from Haematococcus pluvialis immediately after exercise.

ANIMALS 34 exercise-conditioned adult Husky-Pointer dogs.

PROCEDURES The study had 2 phases. During phase 1, postprandial plasma glucose concentration was determined for dogs fed a bar containing 25% protein and 18.5% or 37.4% maltodextrin plus dextrin (rapidly digestible carbohydrate; RDC), or dry kibble (30% protein and 0% RDC) immediately after exercise. During phase 2, dogs were exercised for 3 days and fed a bar (25% protein and 37.4% RDC) with (CPA; n = 8) or without (CP; 8) astaxanthin or no bar (control; 8) immediately after exercise. Pre- and postexercise concentrations of plasma biochemical analytes and serum amino acids were determined on days 1 and 3.

RESULTS Phase 1 postexercise glucose concentration was increased when dogs were provided the 37.4% RDC bar, but not 0% or 18.5% RDC. On day 3 of phase 2, the CPA group had the highest pre-exercise triglyceride concentration and significantly less decline in postexercise glucose concentration than did the CP and control groups. Mean glucose concentration for the CP and CPA groups was significantly higher than that for the control group between 15 and 60 minutes after bar consumption. Compared to immediately after exercise, branched-chain amino acid, tryptophan, leucine, and threonine concentrations 15 minutes after exercise were significantly higher for the CP and CPA groups, but were lower for the control group.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Dogs fed a bar with 37.4% RDCs and 25% protein immediately after exercise had increased blood nutrient concentrations for glycogen and protein synthesis, compared with control dogs.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To investigate water intake and urine measures in healthy cats provided free-choice access to a nutrient-enriched water with (NWP) or without (NW) added poultry flavoring offered at 3 different volumes in addition to tap water (TW).

ANIMALS 36 domestic shorthair cats.

PROCEDURES Control group cats (n = 4) received dry food with TW ad libitum throughout the study. Cats of the NW and NWP groups (n = 16/group) received the same food with TW only (period 1; 7 days) followed by TW and the assigned treatment ad libitum at 1X, 1.5X, and 2X the volume of TW consumed in period 1 during periods 2 (17 days), 3 (10 days), and 4 (10 days), respectively. Liquid consumption, food intake, and total water intake (from all sources) were measured; urine collected over 48 hours in each period was measured, and urine specific gravity (USG) was determined. Data were analyzed with mixed-effects models.

RESULTS TW and food calorie intake were similar among groups in period 1; TW consumption by control cats did not differ during the study. Liquid consumed by drinking increased 18%, 57%, and 96% for the NWP group in periods 2, 3, and 4, respectively, with increases of 25% and 44% for the NW group in periods 3 and 4, respectively, compared with period 1 values for the same groups. Increased urine output and decreased USG were significantly associated with period and treatment.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Increasing the volumes of NW or NWP offered to healthy cats led to increased free liquid consumption and was associated with greater urine output and dilution as measured by USG. Studies are warranted to determine whether these treatments provide health benefits for cats in need of greater water consumption.

Restricted access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare muscle condition scores (MCSs) and muscle ultrasonographic measurements in cats with and without muscle loss and to evaluate repeatability and reproducibility of MCS assessment.

ANIMALS

40 cats of various ages, body condition scores (BCSs), and MCSs.

PROCEDURES

A prospective cross-sectional study was conducted. Body weight, BCS, MCS, epaxial muscle height (EMH), vertebral epaxial muscle score (VEMS), and forelimb epaxial muscle score (FLEMS) were assessed in each cat. The MCS for each cat was assessed 3 separate times by each of 5 raters.

RESULTS

The MCS was significantly correlated with EMH (r = 0.59), VEMS (r = 0.66), and FLEMS (r = 0.41). For MCS, the overall value of the κ coefficient for interrater agreement (reproducibility) was 0.43 and the overall value of the κ coefficient for intrarater agreement (repeatability) ranged from 0.49 to 0.76.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Ultrasonographic measurements of muscle may be useful for assessing muscle loss in individual cats over time. However, for the cats of this study, no advantage was observed for assessment of VEMS or FLEMS over EMH. Substantial repeatability and moderate reproducibility were shown when MCS was used for assessment of muscle mass in cats. Prospective ultrasonographic studies are warranted to evaluate the usefulness of MCS and EMH assessment for evaluation of changes in muscle mass of cats over time.

Restricted access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate repeatability and reproducibility of muscle condition score (MCS) in dogs with various degrees of muscle loss; to compare MCS, muscle ultrasonographic measurements, and quantitative magnetic resonance (QMR) measurements; and to identify cutoff values for ultrasonographic measurements of muscle that can be used to identify dogs with cachexia and sarcopenia.

ANIMALS

40 dogs of various age, body condition score (BCS), and MCS.

PROCEDURES

A prospective cross-sectional study was conducted. Body weight, BCS, QMR measurements, thoracic radiographic measurements, and muscle ultrasonographic measurements were assessed once in each dog. The MCS for each dog was assessed 3 separate times by 4 separate raters.

RESULTS

For the MCS, overall κ for interrater agreement was 0.50 and overall κ for intrarater agreement ranged from 0.59 to 0.77. For both interrater and intrarater agreement, κ coefficients were higher for dogs with normal muscle mass and severe muscle loss and lower for dogs with mild and moderate muscle loss. The MCS was significantly correlated with age (r = −0.62), vertebral epaxial muscle score (VEMS; r = 0.71), forelimb epaxial muscle score (FLEMS; r = 0.58), and BCS (r = 0.73), and VEMS was significantly correlated (r = 0.84) with FLEMS. Cutoff values for identification of mild muscle loss determined by use of VEMS and FLEMS were 1.124 and 1.666, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

MCS had substantial repeatability and moderate reproducibility for assessment of muscle mass in dogs. Prospective studies of MCS, VEMS, and FLEMS for assessment of muscle mass in dogs are warranted.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To determine usefulness of skin turgor and capillary refill time (CRT) for predicting changes in hydration status of working dogs after a 15-minute exercise period.

ANIMALS 9 exercise-conditioned working dogs between 8 and 108 months of age.

PROCEDURES Skin tent time (SkTT; time for tented skin on the forehead to return to an anatomically normal position) and CRT (time for occluded mucous membrane capillary vessels to return to the color visible before occlusion) were measured on dogs in a field setting and by video review. Body weight (BW), SkTT, CRT, and core body temperature were measured before and after a 15-minute exercise period. Exercise challenge was performed on days 1 and 8.

RESULTS Time (day 1 vs day 8) did not significantly affect results; therefore, data were pooled for the 2 trial days. Mean ± SE BW decreased (but not significantly) by 0.83 ± 0.27% after exercise. The SkTT increased significantly (both field setting and video review) after exercise. Correlation between SkTT results for the field setting and video review (r = 0.68) was significant. The CRT decreased (but not significantly) after exercise.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Dogs became mildly dehydrated (mean BW loss, 0.83%) during a 15-minute exercise period, and the mild dehydration was evident as a visually detectable change in skin turgor. Monitoring the SkTT appeared to be a useful strategy for predicting small shifts in hydration status of dogs during exercise. The CRT decreased and was not a significant predictor of a change in hydration status.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To compare quantitative magnetic resonance (QMR), dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA), and deuterium oxide (D2O) dilution methods for measurement of total body water (TBW), lean body mass (LBM), and fat mass (FM) in healthy cats and to assess QMR precision and accuracy.

Animals—Domestic shorthair cats (58 and 32 cats for trials 1 and 2, respectively).

Procedures—QMR scans of awake cats performed with 2 units were followed by administration of D2O tracer (100 mg/kg, PO). Cats then were anesthetized, which was followed by QMR and DXA scans. Jugular blood samples were collected before and 120 minutes after D2O administration.

Results—QMR precision was similar between units (coefficient of variation < 2.9% for all measures). Fat mass, LBM, and TBW were similar for awake or sedated cats and differed by 4.0%, 3.4%, and 3.9%, respectively, depending on the unit. The QMR minimally underestimated TBW (1.4%) and LBM (4.4%) but significantly underestimated FM (29%), whereas DXA significantly underestimated LBM (9.2%) and quantitatively underestimated FM (9.3%). A significant relationship with D2O measurement was detected for all QMR (r 2 > 0.84) and DXA (r 2 > 0.84) measurements.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—QMR was useful for determining body composition in cats; precision was improved over DXA. Quantitative magnetic resonance can be used to safely and rapidly acquire data without the need for anesthesia, facilitating frequent monitoring of weight changes in geriatric, extremely young, or ill pets. Compared with the D2O dilution method, QMR correction equations provided accurate data over a range of body compositions.

Restricted access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To compare quantitative magnetic resonance (QMR), dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA), and deuterium oxide (D2O) methods for measurement of total body water (TBW), lean body mass (LBM), and fat mass (FM) in healthy dogs and to assess QMR accuracy.

Animals—58 Beagles (9 months to 11.5 years old).

Procedures—QMR scans were performed on awake dogs. A D2O tracer was administered (100 mg/kg, PO) immediately before dogs were sedated, which was followed by a second QMR or DXA scan. Jugular blood samples were collected before and 120 minutes after D2O administration.

Results—TBW, LBM, and FM determined via QMR were not significantly different between awake or sedated dogs, and means differed by only 2.0%, 2.2%, and 4.3%, respectively. Compared with results for D2O dilution, QMR significantly underestimated TBW (10.2%), LBM (13.4%), and FM (15.4%). Similarly, DXA underestimated LBM (7.3%) and FM (8.4%). A significant relationship was detected between FM measured via D2O dilution and QMR (r 2 > 0.89) or DXA (r 2 > 0.88). Even though means of TBW and LBM differed significantly between D2O dilution and QMR or DXA, values were highly related (r 2 > 0.92).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—QMR was useful for determining body composition in dogs and can be used to safely and rapidly acquire accurate data without the need for sedation or anesthesia. These benefits can facilitate frequent scans, particularly in geriatric, extremely young, or ill pets. Compared with the D2O dilution method, QMR correction equations provided accurate assessment over a range of body compositions.

Restricted access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research