Objective—To compare the efficacy of adrafinil,
propentofylline, and nicergoline for enhancing behavior
of aged dogs.
Animals—36 Beagles between 9 and 16 years old.
Procedure—Dogs were randomly assigned to receive
adrafinil (20 mg/kg of body weight, PO, q 24 h; n = 12),
propentofylline (5 mg/kg, PO, q 12 h; 12), or nicergoline
(0.5 mg/kg, PO, q 24 h; 12) for 33 days. Baseline
behaviors in an open field and in kennels (home cage)
were recorded before treatment. After treatment,
behaviors in the open field were recorded 2 hours
after drug administration on days 2, 15, and 28, and 10
hours after administration on days 7, 20, and 33.
Behaviors in the home cage were recorded 2 and 7
hours after drug administration on days 4, 17, and 30.
Results—Treatment with adrafinil resulted in a significant
increase in locomotion in each of the open-field
tests and an increase in locomotion in the home cage.
This latter increase was smaller and more variable
than that in the open field. Locomotion was not
affected by treatment with propentofylline or nicergoline.
In the open field, sniffing decreased over time in
all 3 groups, but the largest decline was observed in
the propentofylline group.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Treatment
with adrafinil may improve the quality of life of aged
dogs by increasing exploratory behavior and alertness.
(Am J Vet Res 2000;61:1410–1414)