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  • Author or Editor: Herman J. Boermans x
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Objective—To characterize hematologic and clinical consequences of chronic dietary consumption of freeze-dried garlic at maximum voluntary intake in horses.

Animals—4 healthy sex- and age-matched horses.

Procedure—An initial garlic dose (0.05 g/kg, twice daily) was fed to 2 horses in a molasses carrier as part of their normal ration and was gradually increased to maximum voluntary intake (0.25 g/kg, twice daily) over 41 days. Dietary supplementation then continued for a total of 71 days. Two control horses were fed molasses with no garlic with their ration. Blood samples were collected weekly and analyzed for hematologic and biochemical changes, including the presence of Heinz bodies. Recovery of affected blood values was followed for 5 weeks after termination of dietary supplementation with garlic.

Results—At a daily dose of > 0.2 g/kg, horses fed garlic developed hematologic and biochemical indications of Heinz body anemia, as characterized by increases in Heinz body score (HBS), mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular hemoglobin, platelet count, and serum unconjugated and total bilirubin concentrations and decreases in RBC count, blood hemoglobin concentration, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration, and serum haptoglobin concentration. Recovery from anemia was largely complete within 5 weeks after termination of dietary supplementation with garlic. Heinz body score and MCV remained high at the end of the 5-week recovery period.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Horses will voluntarily consume sufficient quantities of garlic to cause Heinz body anemia. The potential for garlic toxicosis exists when horses are chronically fed garlic. Further study is required to determine the safe dietary dose of garlic in horses. (Am J Vet Res 2005;66:457–465)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To investigate the effects of feeding cereal-based diets that are naturally contaminated with Fusarium mycotoxins to dogs and assess the efficacy of a polymeric glucomannan mycotoxin adsorbent (GMA) in prevention of Fusarium mycotoxicosis.

Animals—12 mature female Beagles.

Procedures—Dogs received each of 3 cereal-based diets for 14 days. One diet was uncontaminated (control diet), and the other 2 contained contaminated grains; one of the contaminated diets also contained 0.2% GMA. Contaminants included deoxynivalenol, 15-acetyl deoxynivalenol, zearalenone, and fusaric acid. Food intake and nutrient digestibility, body weight, blood pressure, heart rate, and clinicopathologic variables of the dogs were assessed at intervals during the feeding periods.

Results—Food intake and body weight of dogs fed the contaminated diet without GMA were significantly decreased, compared with effects of the control diet. Reductions in blood pressure; heart rate; serum concentrations of total protein, globulin, and fibrinogen; and serum activities of alkaline phosphatase and amylase as well as increases in blood monocyte count and mean corpuscular volume were detected. Consumption of GMA did not ameliorate the effects of the Fusarium mycotoxins. For the GMA-contaminated diet, digestibility of carbohydrate, protein, and lipid was significantly higher than that associated with the control diet, possibly because of physiologic adaptation of the recipient dogs to reduced food intake.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results indicated that consumption of grains naturally contaminated with Fusarium mycotoxins can adversely affect dogs' feeding behaviors and metabolism. As a food additive, GMA was not effective in prevention of Fusarium mycotoxicosis in dogs.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research