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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate epidemiologic features of rabies virus variants in dogs and cats in the United States during 1999 and assess the role of bat-associated variants.

Design—Epidemiologic survey.

Sample Population—Rabies viruses from 78 dogs and 230 cats.

Procedure—Brain specimens from rabid dogs and cats were submitted for typing of rabies virus. Historical information, including ownership and vaccination status, was obtained for each animal. Specimens were typed by use of indirect fluorescent antibody assay or reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction assay and nucleotide sequence analysis.

Results—Nearly all animals were infected with the predicted terrestrial rabies virus variant associated with the geographic location of the submission. A batassociated variant of rabies virus was found in a single cat from Maryland. More than half (53%) of submitted animals were classified as owned animals, and most had no known history of vaccination. One vaccination failure was reported in a dog that did not receive a booster dose of rabies vaccine after exposure to a possibly rabid animal.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Bat-associated rabies virus variants were not a common cause of rabies in dogs and cats during 1999. Vaccine failures were uncommon during the study period. Because most rabid dogs and cats were unvaccinated and were owned animals rather than strays, educational campaigns targeting owners may be useful. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;218:1939–1942)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To evaluate use of an ultrasonographically and radiographically determined value, the vertebral epaxial muscle score (VEMS), for assessing muscle mass in cats.

ANIMALS 30 healthy neutered cats of various body weights and between 1 and 6 years of age.

PROCEDURES Mean epaxial muscle height was calculated from 3 transverse ultrasonographic images obtained at the level of T13. Length of T4 was measured on thoracic radiographs, and the VEMS (ratio of epaxial muscle height to T4 length) was calculated and compared with body weight. Ratios of epaxial muscle height to various anatomic measurements also were compared with body weight as potential alternatives to use of T4 length.

RESULTS 1 cat was excluded because of a heart murmur. For the remaining 29 cats, mean ± SD body weight was 5.05 ± 1.40 kg. Mean epaxial muscle height was 1.27 ± 0.13 cm, which was significantly correlated (r = 0.65) with body weight. The VEMS and value for epaxial muscle height/(0.1 × forelimb circumference) were not significantly correlated (r = −0.18 and −0.06, respectively) with body weight, which is important for measures used for animals of various sizes.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE The VEMS and value for epaxial muscle height/(0.1 × forelimb circumference) can both be used to normalize muscle size among cats of various body weights. Studies are warranted to determine whether these values can be used to accurately assess muscle mass in cats with various adiposity and in those with muscle loss.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research
History

An ovoid, well-defined mass was palpated in the caudal portion of the abdomen of a 2-month-old Sprague-Dawley outbred male rat that was part of a biomedical research project involving surgical placement of an intramedullary pin in the femur. The rat had no other abnormal clinical signs. It was the judgment of the laboratory and clinical personnel that the change would not interfere with research study and that the rat was not in pain or distress. After the rat was included in the study, the research protocol necessitated that a dorsoventral radiographic view of the pelvis, caudal portion of the

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the prevalence of lymphosarcoma and other tumors affecting the spinal cord of cats and to relate specific types of tumors with signalment, history, and clinical findings.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—85 cats with tumors affecting the spinal cord.

Procedures—Medical records of cats with histologically confirmed primary or metastatic tumors of the spinal cord or tumors causing spinal cord disease by local extension from adjacent tissues examined between 1980 and 2005 were reviewed. Data on signalment; clinical history; results of neurologic examination, diagnostic imaging, and clinical pathologic evaluation; and location of tumor within the spinal cord were obtained from medical records and analyzed by use of logistic regression models.

Results—Lymphosarcoma was the most common tumor and affected the spinal cord in 33 (38.8%) cats, followed by osteosarcoma in 14 (16.5%) cats. Cats with lymphosarcoma were typically younger at initial examination, had a shorter duration of clinical signs, and had lesions in more regions of the CNS than did cats with other types of tumors. In 22 of 26 (84.6%) cats with lymphosarcoma, the tumor was also found in extraneural sites.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Data for spinal cord tumors in this population of cats were analyzed by logistic regression analysis, which effectively distinguished cats with lymphosarcoma from cats with other types of tumors. Additional clinical information reported here will help to increase the index of suspicion or definitive antemortem diagnosis of spinal cord tumors of cats.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To compare agreement between 2 pregnancy tests in dairy cattle.

Design—Evaluation study.

Animals—976 and 507 cattle for phases 1 and 2, respectively.

Procedures—Blood samples were collected, and palpation per rectum (PPR) was performed on cattle. Blood samples for the pregnancy-specific protein B (PSPB) ELISA were sent by courier to a commercial laboratory with results returned later. Results of PPR were extracted from herd records. Statistical comparison of results was performed by use of a mixed linear model and N analysis.

Results—Of 571 cattle classified as pregnant by the PSPB ELISA in phase 1, 30 (5%) were nonpregnant by PPR. Mean ± SE adjusted optical density (OD) of cattle classified pregnant by both tests was significantly higher (0.31 ± 0.01), compared with the adjusted OD of cattle classified pregnant by the PSPB ELISA and nonpregnant by PPR (0.22 ± 0.02). Of 255 cows classified pregnant by the PSPB ELISA in phase 2, 31 (12%) were nonpregnant by PPR. Mean ± SE adjusted OD of cattle classified pregnant by both tests was significantly higher (0.26 ± 0.01), compared with the adjusted OD of cattle classified pregnant by the PSPB ELISA and nonpregnant by PPR (0.21 ± 0.01). The N value was 0.82 and 0.81 for phases 1 and 2, respectively.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Good agreement existed between the 2 tests, especially at longer intervals after insemination. Discrepant results appeared to be attributable to a nonviable fetus, embryonic loss, or fetal loss.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the prevalence of biofilm formation under long-term cell culture conditions in serum samples of dairy cattle, goats, cats, and dogs, and to determine whether there is an association between nanobacteria and biofilm formation.

Sample Population—Serum samples of clinically normal animals (313 dairy cattle, 48 goats, 140 dogs, and 44 cats) and animals with various medical conditions (60 dogs and 116 cats).

Procedure—Serum was incubated under cell culture conditions and observed for biofilm formation by use of light microscopy, electron microscopy, and spectroscopy. A polymerase chain reaction assay was developed to identify 16S rRNA gene sequences of nanobacteria.

Results—Biofilm formation developed in serum samples of 304 of 313 (97%) cattle, 44 of 48 (92%) goats, 44 of 44 (100%) cats, and 126 of 140 (90%) dogs. Prevalence of serum samples with positive results for biofilm formation was not significantly different between cats or dogs with and without medical conditions associated with pathologic extraskeletal calcification processes. Scanning electron microscopy and spectroscopy of biofilm samples revealed small coccoid particles consisting mainly of calcium and phosphate. Polymerase chain reaction assay failed to amplify sequences of nanobacteria.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Under longterm cell culture conditions, biofilm made up of aggregates of calcium and phosphate crystals does form in serum samples of clinically normal dairy cattle, goats, cats, and dogs. Disease, however, does not predispose to biofilm formation in serum samples of dogs and cats. Our findings did not support the existence of nanobacteria in serum samples of cattle, goats, cats, and dogs. (Am J Vet Res 2003;64:176–182)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research