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  • Author or Editor: Janet E. Steiss x
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Objective—To determine whether Labrador Retrievers participating in field trials develop respiratory alkalosis and hypocapnia primarily in conditions of high ambient temperatures.

Animals—16 Labrador Retrievers.

Procedures—At each of 5 field trials, 5 to 10 dogs were monitored during a test (retrieval of birds over a variable distance on land [1,076 to 2,200 m]; 36 assessments); ambient temperatures ranged from 2.2° to 29.4°C. For each dog, rectal temperature was measured and a venous blood sample was collected in a heparinized syringe within 5 minutes of test completion. Blood samples were analyzed on site for Hct; pH; sodium, potassium, ionized calcium, glucose, lactate, bicarbonate, and total CO2 concentrations; and values of PvO 2 and PvCO 2. Scatterplots of each variable versus ambient temperature were reviewed. Regression analysis was used to evaluate the effect of ambient temperature (≤ 21°C and > 21°C) on each variable.

Results—Compared with findings at ambient temperatures ≤ 21°C, venous blood pH was increased (mean, 7.521 vs 7.349) and PvCO 2 was decreased (mean, 17.8 vs 29.3 mm Hg) at temperatures > 21°C; rectal temperature did not differ. Two dogs developed signs of heat stress in 1 test at an ambient temperature of 29°C; their rectal temperatures were higher and PvCO 2 values were lower than findings in other dogs.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—When running distances frequently encountered at field trials, healthy Labrador Retrievers developed hyperthermia regardless of ambient temperature. Dogs developed respiratory alkalosis and hypocapnia at ambient temperatures > 21°C.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To establish a protocol to collect temporal-spatial gait analysis variables by use of a portable walkway system in Labrador Retrievers at a walk and to determine reference values.

Animals—56 healthy Labrador Retrievers.

Procedures—6 passes across the walkway (3 passes in each direction) were recorded. Inclusion criteria for a pass were that the dog was at a walk (velocity, 60.0 to 90.0 cm/s) and had minimal head turning. The first 3 passes that met the inclusion criteria were analyzed for each dog.

Results—Mean stride length was 88.4 cm. Mean stance time (ST) of forelimbs and hind limbs was 0.62 and 0.56 seconds, respectively. Mean stance time percentage (ST%; proportion of stance time to total gait cycle time) for forelimbs and hind limbs was 55.6% and 50.2%, respectively. Mean total pressure index (TPI) of forelimbs and hind limbs was 27.1 and 17.4, respectively. Mean number of sensors (NS) activated by each paw strike of forelimbs and hind limbs was 17 and 13, respectively. Mean forelimb-to-hind limb symmetry ratios were 1.11 (ST), 1.10 (ST%), 1.62 (TPI), and 1.37 (NS). Symmetry ratios for left limbs to right limbs, left forelimb to right forelimb, and left hind limb to right hind limb were 1.00.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—A protocol for collection of temporal-spatial gait analysis variables with a portable walkway system in Labrador Retrievers at a walk was developed, and reference values for variables and symmetry ratios were reported. Further research will determine the extent to which symmetry ratios differ in dogs with orthopedic disorders. (Am J Vet Res 2010;71:997–1002)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research