Influence of restricted food intake on estrous cycles and pseudopregnancies in dogs

Dennis F. Lawler From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Shirley D. Johnston From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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D. Glenn Keltner From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Joan M. Ballam From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Richard D. Kealy From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Thomas Bunte From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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George Lust From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Sandra L. Mantz From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Robert C. Nie From the Departments of Pet Products Research and Development (Lawler, Kealy, Mantz, Nie) and Data Services (Keltner, Ballam), Ralston Purina Co, Checkerboard Square, St Louis, MO 63164; Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St Paul, MN 55108 (Johnston); Schering AG. Berlin, Germany (Bunte); and the James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, New York State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (Lust).

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Abstract

Objective

To examine effects of restricted food intake on estrous cycle frequency, interestrus interval, and pseudopregnancy prevalence in dogs.

Animals

28 female Labrador Retrievers.

Procedure

Dogs were paired by body weight when they were 6 weeks old and fed so that the limit-fed pair-mate received 75% of the amount of food offered to its maintenance-fed counterpart. Estrous cycle, interestrus interval, and pseudopregnancy data were recorded.

Results

Mean annual frequency of estrous cycles and duration of interestrus intervals did not differ between feeding groups. Prevalence of clinically evident pseudopregnancy was significantly greater among females that were maintenance fed, although results of endocrinologic testing did not identify a mechanism for this observation.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

Pseudopregnancy in dogs can be influenced by physiologic factors related to nutrition. Clinicians should consider a variety of physiologic and environmental factors when evaluating reproductive function in dogs. (Am J Vet Res 1999;60:820–825)

Abstract

Objective

To examine effects of restricted food intake on estrous cycle frequency, interestrus interval, and pseudopregnancy prevalence in dogs.

Animals

28 female Labrador Retrievers.

Procedure

Dogs were paired by body weight when they were 6 weeks old and fed so that the limit-fed pair-mate received 75% of the amount of food offered to its maintenance-fed counterpart. Estrous cycle, interestrus interval, and pseudopregnancy data were recorded.

Results

Mean annual frequency of estrous cycles and duration of interestrus intervals did not differ between feeding groups. Prevalence of clinically evident pseudopregnancy was significantly greater among females that were maintenance fed, although results of endocrinologic testing did not identify a mechanism for this observation.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

Pseudopregnancy in dogs can be influenced by physiologic factors related to nutrition. Clinicians should consider a variety of physiologic and environmental factors when evaluating reproductive function in dogs. (Am J Vet Res 1999;60:820–825)

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