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  • Author or Editor: Stephen R. Lowry x
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Objective—To determine whether a renal diet modified in protein, phosphorus, sodium, and lipid content was superior to an adult maintenance diet in minimizing uremic episodes and mortality rate in cats with stage 2 or 3 chronic kidney disease (CKD).

Design—Double-masked, randomized, controlled clinical trial.

Animals—45 client-owned cats with spontaneous stage 2 or 3 CKD.

Procedures—Cats were randomly assigned to an adult maintenance diet (n = 23 cats) or a renal diet (22) and evaluated trimonthly for up to 24 months. Efficacy of the renal diet, compared with the maintenance diet, in minimizing uremia, renal-related deaths, and all causes of death was evaluated.

Results—Serum urea nitrogen concentrations were significantly lower and blood bicarbonate concentrations were significantly higher in the renal diet group at baseline and during the 12- and 24-month intervals. Significant differences were not detected in body weight; Hct; urine protein-to-creatinine ratio; and serum creatinine, potassium, calcium, and parathyroid hormone concentrations. A significantly greater percentage of cats fed the maintenance diet had uremic episodes (26%), compared with cats fed the renal diet (0%). A significant reduction in renal-related deaths but not all causes of death was detected in cats fed the renal diet.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The renal diet evaluated in this study was superior to an adult maintenance diet in minimizing uremic episodes and renalrelated deaths in cats with spontaneous stage 2 or 3 CKD.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To evaluate plasma taurine concentrations (PTC), whole blood taurine concentrations (WBTC), and echocardiographic findings in dogs fed 1 of 3 protein-restricted diets that varied in fat and L-carnitine content.

Animals—17 healthy Beagles.

Design—Baseline PTC and WBTC were determined, and echocardiography was performed in all dogs consuming a maintenance diet. Dogs were then fed 1 of 3 protein-restricted diets for 48 months: a low-fat (LF) diet, a high-fat and L-carnitine supplemented (HF + C) diet, or a high-fat (HF) diet. All diets contained methionine and cystine concentrations at or above recommended Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) minimum requirements. Echocardiographic findings, PTC, and WBTC were evaluated every 6 months.

Results—The PTC and WBTC were not significantly different among the 3 groups after 12 months. All groups had significant decreases in WBTC from baseline concentrations, and the HF group also had a significant decrease in PTC. One dog with PT and WBT deficiency developed dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Taurine supplementation resulted in significant improvement in cardiac function. Another dog with decreased WBTC developed changes compatible with early DCM.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—Results revealed that dogs fed protein-restricted diets can develop decreased taurine concentrations; therefore, protein-restricted diets should be supplemented with taurine. Dietary methionine and cystine concentrations at or above AAFCO recommended minimum requirements did not prevent decreased taurine concentrations. The possibility exists that AAFCO recommended minimum requirements are not adequate for dogs consuming protein-restricted diets. Our results also revealed that, similar to cats, dogs can develop DCM secondary to taurine deficiency, and taurine supplementation can result in substantial improvement in cardiac function. (Am J Vet Res 2001;62:1616–1623)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research