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  • Author or Editor: Patricia F. Ashley x
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To determine the effect of oral melatonin (MT) administration on serum concentrations of sex hormones, prolactin, and thyroxine in dogs.


Prospective study.


8 male and 8 female adult sexually intact dogs.


5 male and 5 female dogs were treated with MT (1.0 to 1.3 mg/kg [0.45 to 0.59 mg/lb] of body weight), PO, every 12 hours for 28 days; the other 6 dogs were used as controls. Blood samples were collected on days 0, 14, and 28, and serum concentrations of estradiol-17β, progesterone, testosterone, androstenedione, 17-hydroxyprogesterone (17-HP), dihydroepiandrostenedione sulfate (DHEAS), prolactin, and thyroxine were determined. On day 5, serum MT concentrations were measured before and periodically for up to 8 hours after MT administration in 4 treated dogs.


Female dogs treated with MT had significant decreases in serum estradiol, testosterone, and DHEAS concentrations between days 0 and 28. Male dogs treated with MT had significant decreases in serum estradiol and 17-HP concentrations between days 0 and 28. Serum MT concentrations increased significantly after MT administration and remained high for at least 8 hours. Prolactin and thyroxine concentrations were unaffected by treatment.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

Melatonin is well absorbed following oral administration and may alter serum sex hormone concentrations. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;215:1111–1115)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association