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Development and validation of a body condition score system for cats: A clinical tool

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Abstract

One of the major problems in obesity management has been the lack of a practical method for accurately assessing obesity. The body condition score (BCS) system described in this paper is simple in design requiring only an intellectual addition to a routine physical examination. It has been shown to be repeatable both within scorers and between scorers and may be useful as a tool to obesity management. This paper details of nine points BCS system for cats, including its validation and some clinical applications of this tool.

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... BCS was proposed previously (Laflamme 1997): cats on control group with BCS 5 presented well-proportioned, ribs could be felt with slight fat covering, waist could be seen behind ribs, but was not pronounced and abdominal fat pad was minimal; cats on overweight group presented BCS 6 and 7, ribs were felt with slight excess of fat covering or were not easily felt through moderate fat covering, waist was not easily seen, abdomen may be slight rounding and moderate abdominal fat pad could be seen; cats on obese group presented BCS 8 and 9, ribs could not be felt due to excessive fat covering, waist was absent, abdomen presented obvious rounding with prominent fat pad and fat deposits were also present over lower back area. All estimates were disclosed by the same evaluator. ...
... 7.62 ± 0.58 7.72 ± 0.53 7.90 ± 0.57 6-8 Icterus index (U) 2 ± 0 2 ± 0 2 ± 0 0-5 PLT (10 9 /L) 348.0 ± 112.0 413. Table 1 Gonadal status, sex, age (mean and standard deviation), weight (mean and standard deviation), body condition score (BCS), hematological and biochemical parameters (mean and standard deviation) in cats with body score condition 5 (Control, n = 17), 6/7 (Overweight, n = 13) and 7/8 (Obese, n = 15) according to Laflamme (1997) as well as decreased GGT activity, were also observed in different stages of obesity. In this regard, the current study peroxidation in obese cats. ...
... In this regard, the current study peroxidation in obese cats. Moreover, changes in CBC such as increased MCV and RDW and in biochemical parameters such as increased triglycerides and HDL cholesterol levels, , 6/7 (Overweight, n = 13) and 8/9 (Obese, n = 15) according to Laflamme (1997). Bars indicate minimum and maximum values and boxes represent the first and third quartiles. ...
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Obesity, an extremely important factor in feline clinical practice, is estimated to affect up to one third of the feline population. Moreover, it can trigger chronic inflammation, which could predispose to oxidative stress by increasing reactive oxygen species, thereby generating potentially irreversible cellular damage. This study analyzed hematological, biochemical and oxidative stress profiles at various degrees of feline obesity. Forty-five cats were selected and divided into three groups: control (n = 17), overweight (n = 13) and obese (n = 15), after clinical and laboratory evaluation and body condition score. Biochemical and oxidative stress analyses were performed using a photocolorimeter and hematological analyses were performed in a veterinary cell counter. Obese cats showed increased mean corpuscular volume (MCV), red cell distribution width (RDW), HDL cholesterol and triglycerides and decreased activity of gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT) than control cats, although within the reference ranges for the species. As for oxidative stress, obese cats showed higher total antioxidant capacity (TAC), by the inhibition of 2,2’-Azino-Bis-3-Ethylbenzthiazoline-6-Sulfonic Acid (ABTS), inhibition of ABTS associated with horseradish peroxidase (ABTS + HRP), cupric ion reducing antioxidant capacity (CUPRAC) and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) methods, while overweight cats had a higher TAC-ABTS + HRP and TAC-FRAP than control cats. We conclude that the conditions of natural obesity and overweight in the feline species alter its hematological, biochemical and oxidative stress parameters.
... Compared to their littermates, at physical examination, the 3 kittens were lethargic, dull, and smaller having a disproportionate appearance; the body condition score was 5/9 (according to Laflamme 9-point scale modified by Ghielmetti et al. 2017) [28,29]. In particular, a broad head, short neck and limbs, and a short block-like body were evident in the 3 kittens ( Figure 1). ...
... These cats were older than the ones reported herein; therefore, the effect of growth could reasonably have a lower impact on levothyroxine dosage adjustments. Radiographic features were strongly suggestive of hypothyroidism and similar to those reported in the literature [24,29,32]. The main radiographic findings observed in the present study were delayed epiphyseal ossification with no evidence of growth plates in the appendicular and axial skeleton. ...
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Congenital hypothyroidism is uncommon in cats. This case report describes weight gain, clinicopathological and radiographic changes after early diagnosis and treatment of congenital hypothyroidism in three British shorthair cats’ siblings. Data were assessed at 53 (diagnosis), 83, 185 and 365 days of age. Correlations between serum insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and body weight, levothyroxine dose, total thyroxine, and thyroid-stimulating hormone concentrations were evaluated. The body weights of the congenital hypothyroid kittens were compared with those of their two healthy siblings and British shorthair kittens of the same age. At diagnosis, the congenital hypothyroid kittens showed a significantly lower body weight compared to the healthy siblings (p = 0.03). After diagnosis, oral levothyroxine supplementation was started. The difference in body weight was no longer observed after one month of treatment. The clinical signs, clinicopathological and radiographic abnormalities ameliorated after one month of treatment. IGF-1 concentration was significantly positively correlated with body weight (rs = 0.80, p < 0.002). In conclusion, resolution of the clinical signs, achieving a consistent within-breed weight, and improvement of the clinicopathological and radiographic parameters demonstrated the importance of the early diagnosis and treatment of feline congenital hypothyroidism.
... Groups of 7-10 cats were housed in outdoor colony cages ( Fig. 1), measuring 1400 × 2400 × 4400 mm, and exposed to natural photoperiods. In the same week PA was measured, each cat was weighed and body condition score (BCS) was assessed by a single observer based on a 9-point scale ( Table 2; Laflamme, 1997). Cats were fed a complete and balanced commercially-available canned wet (n = 94) or dry feline diet (n = 7; ad libitum) or a raw diet (n = 32; fed to maintenance energy requirement (100 kcal/kg BW -0.67 ) calculated per colony cage). ...
... Nine-point body condition scoring system (Laflamme, 1997 Ribs palpable with slight excess fat covering; abdominal tuck absent; waist and abdominal fat pad distinguishable but not obvious. 7 ...
Article
Physical activity contributes up to 30% of the total daily energy expenditure of domestic cats (Felis catus) and, therefore, can play an important role in the prevention and reduction of obesity and may impact macronutrient digestibility. An age-related decline in physical activity in domestic cats has been observed, however, scientific data is scarce. The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between physical activity, cat age and body condition score. A secondary aim was to determine whether physical activity level influenced apparent macronutrient digestibility. Using accelerometers, the physical activity of 138 domestic shorthair cats grouped-housed in identical outdoor pens was measured. Cats were divided into five age groups: kitten (n=10), junior (n=37), prime (n=30), mature (n=33) or senior (n=27), and physical activity data was collected from each cat for seven consecutive days. One cat was randomly chosen from each age group as a control and its physical activity was measured for the entire 11-week period. Body condition score of the cats was assessed in the same week that physical activity data was collected. A decline in physical activity with age was found, although this decline was not linear. Cats in the kitten and junior age groups had the highest physical activity. Compared with the younger age groups cats in the prime age group showed a significant reduction physical activity, which then remained constant in the mature and senior age groups. An overall decline in physical activity with an increasing body condition score was found. To investigate whether physical activity influenced apparent macronutrient digestibility, a subset of six cats from the junior and prime age groups were selected at the end of the activity assessment period. Cats were individually housed, fed a commercially available wet canned diet, and had ad libitum access to water. No effect of physical activity on apparent macronutrient digestibility was found.
... Dogs were fed once a day (access from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm) to maintain BW throughout the study, with ad libitum access to water. Weekly BW and body condition score (BCS) measurements were recorded using a nine-point scale (Laflamme, 1997). Food intake was adjusted on a weekly basis as needed to maintain BW. ...
... Nine-point body condition score system used(Laflamme, 1997).Downloaded from https://academic.oup.com/jas/advance-article/doi/10.1093/jas/skac048/6532036 by Mathematics Library user on 21 February 2022 ...
Article
A variety of functional ingredients, including fibers, prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics may be added to pet foods to support gastrointestinal and immune health. While many of these ingredients have been tested individually, commercial foods often include blends that also require testing. This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of diets containing blends of fibers, ‘biotics’, and/or spray-dried plasma on apparent total tract digestibility (ATTD), stool quality, fecal microbiota and metabolites, and immune health outcomes of adult dogs. Twelve healthy adult intact English pointer dogs (6 M; 6 F; age = 6.4 ± 2.0 yr; BW = 25.8 ± 2.6 kg) were used in a replicated 3x3 Latin square design to test diets formulated to: 1) contain a low concentration of fermentative substances (control diet; CT); 2) be enriched with a fiber-prebiotic-probiotic blend (FPPB); and 3) be enriched with a fiber-prebiotic-probiotic blend + immune-modulating ingredients (iFFPB). In each 28-d period, 22 d of diet adaptation was followed by a 5-d fecal collection phase and 1 d for blood sample collection. All data were analyzed using SAS 9.4, with significance being P<0.05 and trends being P<0.10. FPPB and iFPPB diets led to shifts in numerous outcome measures. Dry matter (DM), organic matter, fat, fiber, and energy ATTD were lower (P<0.01), fecal scores were lower (P<0.01; firmer stools), and fecal DM% was higher (P<0.0001) in dogs fed FPPB or iFPPB than those fed CT. Serum triglycerides and cholesterol were lower (P<0.01) in dogs fed FPPB or iFPPB than those fed CT. Fecal protein catabolites (isobutyrate, isovalerate, indole, ammonia) and butyrate were lower (P<0.05), while fecal immunoglobulin A (IgA) was higher (P<0.01) in dogs fed FPPB and iFPPB than those fed CT. Fecal microbiota populations were affected by diet, with alpha diversity being lower (P<0.05) in dogs fed iFPPB and the relative abundance of 20 bacterial genera being altered in dogs fed FPPB or iFPPB compared to CT. The circulating helper T cell:cytotoxic T cell ratio was higher (P<0.05) in dogs fed iFPPB than those fed CT. Circulating B cells were lower (P<0.05) in dogs fed FPPB than those fed iFPPB, and lower (P<0.05) in dogs fed iFPPB than those fed CT. Our results demonstrate that feeding a fiber-prebiotic-probiotic blend may provide many benefits to canine health, including improved stool quality, beneficial shifts to fecal microbiota and metabolite profiles, reduced blood lipids, and increased fecal IgA.
... This study was approved by the local animal experimentation ethics committee and the research ethics committee. As an inclusion criterion, adult cats with body condition scores (BCS) 5 and BCS > 5 were used according to the Laflamme (1997), regardless of sex and reproductive status. In order to promote a peaceful environment for patients, Feliway® CLASSIC spray was sprayed on the table, 15 min prior to each consultation, where the animals would be handled. ...
... They were classified based on their body scores. The initial review (age, sex, and reproductive status), detailed anamnesis, general physical examinations, and specific assessments related to the nutritional status, such as patient weight and analysis of the BCS through body inspection and palpation, classified on a scale from 1 to 9, with BCS 5 being ideal (Laflamme, 1997;Mawby et al., 2004;Freeman et al., 2011). Thereafter, an evaluation of the muscle mass index (MMI) was performed through visual analysis and palpation of the temporal, scapular, vertebral muscles, and ilium wings (Freeman et al., 2011;Barbosa, Botelho, Alves, & Souza, 2018). ...
Article
Excess body fat can cause a series of metabolic and mechanical effects on the body. Therefore, this study aimed to verify the clinical, metabolic, and risk factors of overweight (OW) cats. For the acceptance of participation in the research, the tutors were asked to answer a questionnaire containing 34 questions and to point out the body condition score (BCS) on a sheet containing nine images of different scores (1 to 9 on a 9-point scale). Thereafter, the body evaluations were performed as a classification of the BCS on a scale from 1 to 9, with an ideal score (IS) of BCS 5 and OW for BCS > 5. Further, the lean mass index and morphometric measurements (thoracic and abdominal circumferences and height and length of the patella to calcaneal tuberosity) were performed to estimate the percentage of body fat. Systolic blood pressure was measured using the non-invasive Doppler method and blood was collected for hemogram and serum biochemistry (creatinine, urea, alanine aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, gamma-glutamyl transferase, glucose, triglycerides, and cholesterol). After these analyses, we sought to guide and raise the awareness of the tutors to promote the correct nutritional and environmental management of the animals. Thirty adult cats were divided into two groups, based on the classification of the BCS, with eight having an IS and 22 being OW. The OW group was found to have a low level of physical activity, hypercholesterolemia, and higher values of body characteristics. Additionally, there was a median agreement between the perceptions of the clinician and the tutors. Therefore, it was concluded that the main laboratory alteration found in the obese cats was hypercholesterolemia, which was a critical parameter. It was observed that a low degree of physical activity could cause excess weight gain. It was found that the guardians of the cats with ideal weight underestimated the BCS, which could contribute to the supply of excess food and consequently, obesity. Thus, this study was sought to guide and raise the awareness of tutors, to promote the correct nutritional and environmental management thereby providing welfare and quality of life to the animals.
... Twelve domestic shorthair cats (six neutered males and six spayed females) were included in this study. All cats were considered chronically obese, with a body condition score (BCS) of ≥8/9 [43]. At the start of the study, the cats had a mean body weight (BW) of 7.4 ± 0.3 kg (mean ± SEM; range: 5.9-8.9 ...
... Leftovers from each meal were weighed daily and used to calculate the daily food intake for each cat. The cats were weighed twice weekly, and the BCS was assessed on a nine-point-scale and recorded weekly [43]. The amount of food offered was adjusted to maintain a constant BW and BCS. ...
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Obesity is a health concern for domestic cats. Obesity and severe energy restriction predispose cats to feline hepatic lipidosis. As choline is linked to lipid metabolism, we hypothesized that dietary choline supplementation would assist in reducing hepatic fat through increased lipoprotein transport and fatty acid oxidation. Twelve obese cats (body condition score [BCS] ≥ 8/9) were split into two groups. Cats were fed a control (n = 6; 4587 mg choline/kg dry matter [DM]) or a high choline diet (n = 6; 18,957 mg choline/kg DM) for 5 weeks, for adult maintenance. On days 0 and 35, fasted blood was collected, and the body composition was assessed. Serum lipoprotein and biochemistry profiles, plasma amino acids and plasma acylcarnitines were analyzed. The body weight, BCS and body composition were unaffected (p > 0.05). Choline increased the serum cholesterol, triacylglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and plasma methionine (p < 0.05) and decreased the serum blood urea nitrogen and alkaline phosphatase (p < 0.05). Choline also reduced the plasma acylcarnitine to free carnitine ratio (p = 0.006). Choline may assist in eliminating hepatic fat through increased fat mobilization and enhanced methionine recycling.
... Nine were female and eight were male (all castrated); mean age was 9.1 ± 4 years and mean body weight was 6 ± 2.5 kg. All diabetic cats had at least 6 weeks of insulin therapy (median 7 weeks [range [6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21][22][23][24]) at the time of enrollment. No cats changed insulin type during the study period. ...
... After treatment with fenofibrate, 7/8 (87.5%) diabetic cats reduced and normalized their TG concentrations. It is important to highlight that secondary hyperlipidemia in these cases had not been resolved with insulin and dietary management alone (median time on insulin and dietary treatment before enrollment: 7 weeks [range [6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21][22][23][24]), reinforcing the necessity of implementing lipidlowering therapies, such as fenofibrate, in diabetic cats with hyperlipidemia that is not controlled with insulin Table 1 Triglyceride (TG), total cholesterol (TC), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), creatine kinase (CK), creatinine, blood urea nitrogen concentrations (BUN) and urine protein:creatinine ratio (UPC) in 17 cats treated with fenofibrate, before (t0) and after 1 month of treatment (t1) therapy and dietary management. In addition, it is necessary to clarify that this study did not evaluate the use of fenofibrate in cats with primary hyperlipidemia or in cats in which hyperlipidemia does not resolve with treatment of the underlying disease (with the exception of DM). ...
Article
Objectives The aim of this study was to assess the short-term safety and efficacy of fenofibrate in controlling secondary hypertriglyceridemia in cats. Methods This was a prospective cohort study. Seventeen adult cats with hypertriglyceridemia (serum triglycerides [TG] >160 mg/dl) were enrolled. Cats received a median dose of 5 mg/kg (range 3.2–6) fenofibrate (q24h PO) for 1 month. Serum TG, total cholesterol (TC), creatine kinase and liver enzymes (alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase and alkaline phosphatase) were evaluated before (t0) and after 1 month (t1) of fenofibrate treatment. Results The causes of secondary hypertriglyceridemia were diabetes mellitus (DM; 29.4%), obesity (29.4%), hyperadrenocorticism (HAC) and DM (11.7%), HAC without DM (5.9%), hypersomatotropism (HST) and DM (5.9%), hypothyroidism (5.9%), long-term treatment with glucocorticoids (5.9%) and chylothorax (5.9%). Serum TG (t0 median 920 mg/dl [range 237–1780]; t1 median 51 mg/dl [range 21–1001]; P = 0.0002) and TC (t0 median 278 mg/dl [range 103–502]; t1 median 156 mg/dl [range 66–244]; P = 0.0001) concentrations showed a significant decrease after 1 month of fenofibrate treatment. Fifteen cats normalized their TG concentration at t1 (88.2%). Of the eight cats that were hypercholesterolemic at t0, six (75%) normalized their TC concentrations at t1. One of 17 cats (5.9 %) presented with diarrhea; the remaining 16 did not show any adverse effects. Conclusions and relevance DM and obesity are the most common endocrine causes of secondary hyperlipidemia, although it can also be found in cats with HAC, HST or hypothyroidism. This study suggests that fenofibrate treatment was associated with reduction and normalization of TG and TC concentrations in cats with moderate and severe hypertriglyceridemia, regardless of the cause of secondary hypertriglyceridemia. Further work should focus on controlled studies with a greater number of cases.
... Periodontitis is the most common oral disease in 44 to 81% of dogs from 2 years of age (KORTEGAARD et al., 2008). Supragingival weighing 12.7 ± 1.67 kg, with a body condition score (BCS) ranging from 5.3 ± 0.4 out of 9 points (LAFLAMME, 1997), and free of endo-and ectoparasites, were used in this study. The dogs belonged to the Animal Science Dept, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil, and were regularly immunized and submitted for clinical and laboratory tests to measure complete blood count (CBC) and to perform biochemical and coproparasitological analyses before starting the study. ...
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The presence of dental calculus is one of the main issues associated with periodontitis in dogs. Mechanical removal of plaque and dental calculus can be performed through periodic oral prophylaxis conducted by veterinary dentists, and by continuous chewing of various items. Recent studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of bones as dental calculus agent removal in adult dogs. However, their effect regarding removal of oral microbiota remains unknown. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of autoclaved spongy bone (SB) or compact bone (CB) supplementation on the oral microbiota of adult dogs with pre-existing dental calculus. The V4 region of the 16S rDNA gene was used for Illumina MiSeq next-generation sequencing. Transition was observed on the phyla proportion of the SB group, where the saliva sample initially presented a predominance of Bacteroidetes (51.3%) and Proteobacteria (33.0%), and changed to Proteobacteria (52.4%) and Bacteroidetes (33.9%). The gingival sulcus changed from Bacteroidetes (66.7%) and Proteobacteria (17.5%) prior to SB supplementation to Proteobacteria (76.3%) and Bacteroidetes (18.5%). No changes were observed in the proportion of saliva and gingival sulcus phyla in group CB. Moraxella sp. and Bergeyella zoohelcum increased in both saliva and gingival sulcus after SB supplementation. Saliva and gingival sulcus in the CB group showed increases in Porphyromonas species after 13 days’ supplementation. This study showed that chewing SB had a profound impact on both saliva and gingival sulcus microbiota, while CB did not cause substantial changes in the microbiota in either environment.
... Thus, the objective of this study was to characterize the general activity pattern of free-living dogs diagnosed with OA. In addition, we aimed to assess how the tracked activity correlated with age, body weight (BW), body condition score (BCS) (LaFlamme, 1997), circulating markers of inflammation (C-reactive protein; matrix metalloproteinase-3), veterinarian pain assessment and owner perception of pain. We hypothesized that activity data would be negatively correlated with owner perception of pain, veterinarian assessment of pain, age, BW, BCS, and serum inflammatory markers. ...
Article
Osteoarthritis (OA) affects about 90% of dogs > 5 yr of age in the US, resulting in reduced range of motion, difficulty climbing and jumping, reduced physical activity, and lower quality of life. Our objective was to use activity monitors to measure physical activity and identify how activity counts correlate with age, body weight (BW), body condition score (BCS), serum inflammatory markers, veterinarian pain assessment, and owner perception of pain in free-living dogs with OA. The University of Illinois Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee approved the study and owner consent was received prior to experimentation. Fifty-six client-owned dogs (mean age = 7.8 yr; mean BCS = 6.1) with clinical signs and veterinary diagnosis of OA wore HeyRex activity collars continuously over a 49-d period. Blood samples were collected on d 0 and 49, and dog owners completed canine brief pain inventory (CBPI) and Liverpool osteoarthritis in dogs (LOAD) surveys on d 0, 21, 35, and 49. All data were analyzed using SAS 9.3 using repeated measures and R Studio 1.0.136 was used to generate Pearson correlation coefficients between data outcomes. Average activity throughout the study demonstrated greater activity levels on weekends. It also showed that 24-h activity spiked twice daily, once in the morning and another in the afternoon. Serum C-reactive protein concentration was lower (P < 0.01) at d 49 compared to d 0. Survey data indicated lower (P < 0.05) overall pain intensity and severity score on d 21, 35 and 49 compared to d 0. BW was correlated with average activity counts (p=0.02; r=-0.12) and run activity (p=0.10; r=-0.24). Weekend average activity counts were correlated with owner pain intensity scores (p=0.0813; r=-0.2311), but weekday average activity count was not. Age was not correlated with total activity count, sleep activity, or run activity, but it was correlated with scratch (p=0.03; r=-0.10), alert (p=0.03; r=-0.13) and walk (p=0.09; r=-0.23) activities. Total activity counts and activity type (sleep, scratch, alert, walk, run) were not correlated with pain scored by veterinarians, pain intensity or severity scored by owners, or baseline BCS. Even though the lack of controls and/or information on the individual living conditions of dogs resulted in a high level of variability in this study, our data suggest that the use of activity monitors have the potential to aid in the management of OA and other conditions affecting activity (e.g., allergy; anxiety).
... Fifty healthy foxhound dogs (all lean body weight, body condition score [BCS] range 3-5/9 Purina body condition score system) were enrolled in the study [62]. All dogs had up to date vaccination status and no signs of gastrointestinal disease or medication within the previous 3 months. ...
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Background Dietary content and environmental factors can shape the gut microbiota, and consequently, the way the gut microbiota metabolizes fats, carbohydrates, and proteins, affecting overall health of the host. We evaluated the impact of 3 diets (all meat [raw], high-insoluble fiber dry extruded diet and hydrolyzed protein dry extruded diet) on the gut microbiota of healthy dogs in a cross-over sequential study. Results We showed that diet can have an effect on the gut microbiome in dogs, which was influenced by the order of feeding. High-protein (all meat) diets were characterized by an increase in bacteria belonging to the Fusobacteria and Bacteroidetes phyla, whereas a high-insoluble fiber commercial diet correlated with increases in Firmicutes and Actinobacteria phyla. However, the individual dog’s baseline microbiota had the most impact on the magnitude and nature of the changes in response to dietary intervention. Conclusion Our results suggest that the dog fecal microbiota is driven by protein and fiber composition to different degrees in individual animals, and targeted modification of these patterns could be useful in the modulation of the gut microbiota in different diseases.
... The animals' body score was 5 (palpable ribs without excessive adipose coverage, when viewed from above; the waist is seen behind the ribs, and the abdomen can be seen retracted from the side), on a scale of 1 to 9, considered as an ideal score body for cats by Laflamme (1997). ...
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Abstract Animals corpses in teaching and research institutions could be sources of infection for students and teachers when applied for dissection and surgical practice. This research aimed to evaluate cats’ corpses’ conservation using a new anatomic technique and vacuum package for seven days, aiming surgical practicing. A 150 mL/kg of alcohol with 5% glycerin and 120 mL/kg of a 20% sodium chloride, 1% nitrite, and 1% sodium nitrate solution was injected on corpses sealed in vacuum packages and put on 0 to 4°C. Skin and jejunum were collected on day 0 (fresh samples/control), and traction analysis was performed for seven consecutive days. On the last day, the liquid in the plastic bags was microbiologically analyzed. There was no statistical difference between control and conservation moments (D1 and D2) in maximal rupture force of the skin, and jejunum was similar to control in D2, D4, and D6. The microbial population did not exceed 6.0x104CFU/mL in total aerobics and 4.8x104CFU/mL in total anaerobes. Biomechanics was not significantly affected, and the microbiological count was low during conservation, demonstrating the possible effectiveness of this anatomical technique for surgery training.
... However, its main limitation is that it is not able to differentiate the volume body, in other words between a sizeable lean cat and an obese small one. BCS is probably the most used and known technique [2,4,14]; this method estimates the cat body condition by visually ranking it in predefined categories, ranging from "emaciated" to "severely obese". Alternatively, the morphometric analysis consists of taking body measures that, in cats, correlate well with either lean body mass, such as the length of the head, thorax and limbs [15], or with fat body mass, such as the thorax circumference [16]. ...
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Overweight is common in cats and has health and welfare implications. This study aimed to assess potential predictive/protective factors for feline overweight associated with owner management and their relationship with cat behavior and welfare. A questionnaire was administered to 197 owners to collect information about cat demographics, management, environment, dietary habits and behavior. The feline Body Mass Index was recorded for each cat. Univariate logistic regression was used to evaluate the association of parameters with overweight cats. Variables with a p-value < 0.10 at univariable analyses were selected for the multivariable model. Most cats were mixed- breed, 1–7 years old and neutered; 51.3% were overweight. Age higher than 7 years, neutering, being alone all day and being stressed were predictive for overweight (p < 0.05). Conversely, the presence of other animals had a protective effect (p < 0.05). A general disagreement between owners’ perception and clinical evaluation of cats’ body condition was a common and significant risk factor for overweight (OR = 8.532, 95% CI = 4.073–17.875; p < 0.001). According to the owners, many veterinarians did not inform them about their cat being overweight nor about the risks (p < 0.001). This study provides helpful information on the influence of management and environment on cats’ body condition and its relationship with cat welfare.
... Prior to beginning and every 2 weeks during the study, each cat's body weight was recorded using the same scale immediately before feeding. Body condition scoring using a 9-point scale (48) was also performed. Venous blood was then collected by jugular venipuncture and plasma was collected every 2 weeks for vitamin D metabolite determination. ...
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Feline vitamin D status is based on dietary consumption but metabolism of this essential nutrient and the efficacy of supplementation forms are poorly described in cats. The aim of this study was to further elucidate the metabolites of vitamin D2 in cats and to compare the effectiveness of vitamin D2 and 25(OH)D2 for increasing feline vitamin D status. Eight adult male castrated domestic shorthair cats received vitamin D2 or 25(OH)D2 in a single crossover design. Vitamin D2 was dosed daily in a molar equivalent dosage to vitamin D3 ingested in the diet while 25(OH)D2 was provided at a daily dose of 20% molar equivalent intake of dietary vitamin D3 based on its expected higher potency. Plasma concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D epimers were evaluated at baseline then every 2 weeks for a total of 10 weeks. Analysis of multiple vitamin D metabolite concentrations was completed at the end of each supplementation period, followed by a washout period preceding the second phase of the crossover trial. Results showed that supplementation with 25(OH)D2 more effectively and rapidly raised circulating 25(OH)D2 levels in cat plasma compared to vitamin D2. Formation of C-3 epimers of 25(OH)D3, 25(OH)D2, and 24,25R(OH)2D3, but not 24,25(OH)2D2, were observed in feline plasma. The abundant concentrations of epimeric forms of vitamin D metabolites found in circulation suggest that these metabolites should be considered during vitamin D analyses in cats. Further studies using 25(OH)D and vitamin D2 forms are needed to conclude safety and efficacy of these vitamers for supplementation in this species.
... The French Bulldog species was selected for this research due to its predisposition to flatulence being a brachycephalic dog breed (Roudebush et al., 2010). Eight healthy adult French Bulldogs (1 male and 7 female) with a mean weight of 11.09 ± 2.35 kg, mean age of 2.75 ± 1.98 years old, and body condition score between 4 and 5 (Laflamme, 1997) were used. Health status was confirmed before the beginning of the experiment by physical, blood and parasitologi- ...
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The strong odour of faeces and excessive production of gases in some dog breeds have long been a concern of owners. The pet food industry uses nutritional alternatives, such as high‐quality ingredients and additives, to improve the odour of faeces. However, there are still some dog breeds, such as the French Bulldog, that present this problem due to the presence into the large intestine of indigested protein. Therefore, a deeper understanding of the volatile compounds that influence the odour of dog faeces is important. This study aimed to identify changes of faecal odour compounds that are most prevalent in French Bulldogs based on food containing different high‐quality protein sources and their effect in sensory analysis. Four maintenance foods with different protein sources were formulated: P, poultry meal food; W, wheat gluten food; PW, poultry meal and wheat gluten food; and PWH, poultry meal, wheat gluten, and hydrolysed protein food. Eight adult French Bulldogs were arranged in a 4x4 Latin square design and adapted to foods for 28 days. Fresh faeces were collected for analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and sensory analysis. The means were compared by SAS, and statistical significance was indicated by p ≤ 0.05. No adverse effects were observed in the animals regarding VOCs, and a significant difference was observed in two of the 68 compounds identified. The animals fed a P food had higher concentrations of phenol in the faeces, whereas the indole compound was present at higher concentrations in animals fed the W food. P food was associated with higher odour perception during sensory evaluation. In summary, the source of protein in the foods had little impact on the composition of VOCs, and a greater perception of the odour was determined by sensory analysis when foods containing animal protein were administered.
... Eight neutered adult male domestic shorthair cats with a mean BW = 7.7 ± 0.42 kg and mean BCS = 7.6 ± 0.38 on a 9-point scale [110] were used. Mean age at the start of the study was 7.78 ± 0.03 years. ...
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Feline obesity elicits a plethora of metabolic responses leading to comorbidities, with potential reversal during weight loss. The specific metabolic alterations and biomarkers of organ dysfunction are not entirely understood. Untargeted, high-throughput metabolomic technologies may allow the identification of biological components that change with weight status in cats, increasing our understanding of feline metabolism. The objective of this study was to utilize untargeted metabolomic techniques to identify biomarkers and gain mechanistic insight into the serum metabolite changes associated with reduced food intake and weight loss in overweight cats. During a four-wk baseline period, cats were fed to maintain body weight. For 18 wk following baseline, cats were fed to lose weight at a rate of ~1.5% body weight/wk. Blood serum metabolites were measured at wk 0, 1, 2, 4, 8, 12, and 16. A total of 535 named metabolites were identified, with up to 269 of them being altered (p-and q-values < 0.05) at any time point. A principal component analysis showed a continual shift in metabolite profile as weight loss progressed, with early changes being distinct from those over the long term. The majority of lipid metabolites decreased with weight loss; however, ketone bodies and small lipid particles increased with weight loss. The majority of carbohydrate metabolites decreased with weight loss. Protein metabolites had a variable result, with some increasing, but others decreasing with weight loss. Metabolic mediators of inflammation, oxidative stress, xenobiotics, and insulin resistance decreased with weight loss. In conclusion, global metabolomics identified biomarkers of reduced food intake and weight loss in cats, including decreased markers of inflammation and/or altered macronutrient metabolism.
... Each dog was muzzled and manually restrained for physical examination and sample collection by veterinary students under the direct supervision of a veterinarian. A 9-point body condition score (BCS) scale was used, with 1 = emaciated, 5 = ideal, and 9 = morbidly obese, and any dog with a score < 4 is considered underweight (Laflamme, 1997;Bowland et al., 2020). The BCS scheme uses parameters such as fat cover over ribs, presence of abdominal tuck, and fat stores over the hips to assess nutritional status. ...
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As the world's most ubiquitous carnivore, domestic dogs maintain unique proximity to human populations. Partly because dogs potentially serve as hosts of zoonotic diseases, determinants of canine health are increasingly the focus of interdisciplinary research. Emerging perspectives suggest that dogs' health may vary as a function of their owners' wealth and financial resources, a correlation that could potentially inform public health programs and conservation efforts. The objective of this study was to evaluate associations between household wealth and the health of domestic dogs (n = 208) among indigenous Mayangna communities in the Bosawás Biosphere Reserve, Nicaragua. The dogs were evaluated using serum biochemistry, complete blood count, and physical exam findings. Using these data, a principal components analysis (PCA) determined the presence of four "syndromes": 1) decreased body condition score (BCS) & hypoalbuminemia; 2) lymphocytosis & eosinophilia; 3) segmented neutrophilia; and 4) lymphadenopathy, tick infestation, & hyperglobulinemia. An inventory of possessions indexed household wealth. For all four syndromes, household wealth was a weak and uninformative predictor of the dogs' health. The few differences seen among dogs from households with different degrees of wealth likely reflect that nearly all dogs had marginal health and all households were relatively poor. Results from this study imply that owners' wealth may have diverse effects on canine health in rural settings.
... In vivo digestibility, fecal, and urinary characterization Animals Twelve healthy, intact adult Beagles (six males and six females) from the Animal Science Department, UFRGS, Porto Alegre, Brazil, were used in this study. All individuals were 5 years of age, weighing 11.8 ± 1.45 kg, with a body condition score (BCS) ranging from 5 to 6 out of 9 points (Laflamme 1997), and were free of endo-and ectoparasites. All dogs were regularly immunised and submitted to clinical and laboratory tests to measure complete blood count (CBC) and to perform biochemical and coproparasitological analyses before the start of the study. ...
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This study aimed to evaluate a commercial hydrolysed chicken liver powder (HCLP) as a single source of animal protein in diets for adult dogs. A characterisation of the HCLP was followed by assessment of diets palatability and in vivo and in vitro digestibility. Two extruded isonitrogenous diets were produced: control (poultry byproduct + bovine meat and bone meal) and HCLP. Twenty-two dogs of different breeds were used to test palatability, and twelve Beagle dogs were used to evaluate digestibility. HCLP had high concentrations of lysine, linoleic and arachidonic acids, and most of peptides with molecular weight <10 kDa. HCLP diet had the highest inclusion of the experimental ingredient based on its chemical composition. Dogs did not show preference among diets (p > .05). Ash and fat intake were higher in dogs fed the control diet, (p < .0001) and (p = .0135), respectively. Crude fibre intake was higher in dogs fed the HCLP diet (p = .0001). Dogs fed the HCLP diet had similar faecal score (p > .05) compared to control diet, although faecal dry matter was reduced (p = .0321) and the daily faecal production was increased (p = .0361). The diets in vitro digestibility did not differ (p > .05). Based on our results, HCLP included up to 26% in diets for adult dogs presented satisfactory results in palatability, digestibility of nutrients and energy, faecal and urinary characteristics. Although dogs fed the HCLP diet produced slightly moist stools, it had no negative impact on faecal score. • Highlights • A commercial hydrolysed chicken liver powder (HCLP) was evaluated and presented low molecular weight and high amounts of essential nutrients. HCLP, included as a single source of animal protein, had good digestibility and acceptance for adult dogs. • Despite findings from previous studies, the inclusion of HCLP at the level of 25.8% did not promote diarrhoea and the final faecal score remained within the ideal range.
... Upon immobilization, each fisher was immediately weighed and transferred to an exam table where it was externally inspected for basic health and condition. Each animal was assigned a general body condition score based on Laflamme (1997), with a categorical range of 1-5, where '3' represents ideal condition. British Columbia fishers averaged a 2.97 (range = 1-4) body condition score, and Alberta fishers averaged a 2.94 (range = 1.5-5) body condition score. ...
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Fishers (Pekania pennanti) are a mid-sized member of the weasel family that historically occurred in the dense coniferous forests of Washington. Unregulated harvest, loss and fragmentation of habitat, and predator control campaigns beginning in the late 1800s collectively resulted in the decline and extirpation of fishers from Washington by the mid-1900s. Fishers were subsequently listed as an endangered species by the state. We established a partnership between federal, state, and non-profit organizations with the goal of re-establishing self-sustaining fisher populations in their former range in Washington, which includes the Cascade Range. Our objectives were to 1) Release ≥80 fishers into the South Cascade Ecosystem and ≥80 fishers into the North Cascades Ecosystem, with ≥50% female composition, 2) Release fishers at few locations in each reintroduction area to increase the likelihood of fishers interacting, 3) Release as many fishers as possible before January 1st each season, so that the stress of the reintroduction process occurred well before the active gestation period of female fishers, and 4) Monitor post-release movements, survival, home range establishment, and reproduction to evaluate initial success of the reintroduction project during the two years following their release. From 2015–2020, we translocated 81 fishers (69 fishers (38 F, 31 M) from British Columbia, Canada, and 12 fishers (7 F, 5 M) from Alberta, Canada) into the South Cascades, including Mount Rainier National Park, and Gifford Pinchot National Forest. From 2018–2020, we translocated 89 fishers (48 F, 41 M) from Alberta, Canada, into the North Cascades, including North Cascades National Park Service Complex and Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. We monitored fishers using radio-telemetry from 2015–2021, and collected 1,298 fisher locations during those efforts. We supplemented those data with incidental verified detections captured on remote trail cameras during the same time period, which totaled an additional 277 locations. Collectively, these detections ranged across 18,573 km2 of the South Cascades and 15,452 km2 of the North Cascades. The project was a successful conservation action: we achieved our stated objectives and met most benchmarks of success for reintroduction and animal welfare. We were able to translocate 170 fishers from Canada to the Washington Cascades that met all optimal health criteria and represented a young founder population with a slightly female-biased sex ratio. We moved fishers efficiently, reduced their time in captivity throughout the project, and met high standards of animal care and welfare. We released fishers at a few centralized locations in each portion of the recovery area, hopefully facilitating interaction and reducing the tendency for animals to wander far in search of conspecifics. We also released most fishers before January 1 of each year, which allowed animals to settle and begin establishing a home range before the onset of breeding season. Reproduction was documented in both the North and South Cascades within two years of release, with one female in the North Cascades producing a litter of 4 kits (which equals the highest known litter size in the western US). Survival one year after reintroduction was high in the South Cascades (76%), but lower than expected in the North Cascades (42%). Juvenile females represented the highest survival of all ages and across all cohorts, at 83% in the South Cascades, and 55% in the North Cascades. At the end of 2021, fishers were well distributed across much of the Cascades Fisher Recovery Area. Some animals were located enough times to determine that a home range had likely been established; and based on the consistent distribution within the recovery area through time, we can assume that many other fishers have settled into a home range that includes the west slope of the Washington Cascades. This report details all elements of the Cascades Fisher Reintroduction Project, including capture and handling, transport, veterinary care and assessments, movements, survival, reproduction, genetics, necropsy information, and on-going research associated with predator-prey relationships, allometry, behavior, and stress physiology. It is our hope that much of this information will be used to improve animal welfare and success of future wildlife reintroduction projects. The successes of this project arose from collaboration of four federal agencies, three state and provincial agencies, eight Tribes and First Nations, two universities, and 22 non-government organizations. Approximately 900 people attended the 32 release events in the Cascades, including several school and youth groups. Children released almost every fisher.
... It is important to highlight that dogs used in this study had the ideal body condition score 5 out 9 points [49] and fecal score, which is comparable with the microbiota present in lean dogs. Previous research has shown a greater abundance of Firmicutes in obese mice fed Western diets, concomitant decreasing abundance of Bacteroidetes [50,51]. ...
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Feathers are naturally made up of non-digestible proteins. Under thermal processing, total tract digestibility can be partially improved. Furthermore, Bacillus subtilis (Bs) has shown a hydrolytic effect In vitro. Then, a Bs FTC01 was selected to hydrolyze enough feathers to produce a meal, and then test the quality and inclusion in the dog’s diet to measure the apparent total tract digestibility coefficient (ATTDC) in vivo and the microorganism’s ability to survive in the gastrointestinal tract. A basal diet was added with 9.09% hydrolyzed Bs feather meal (HFMBs) or 9.09% thermally hydrolyzed feather meal (HFMT). Nine adult dogs were randomized into two 10-day blocks and fed different diets. Microbial counts were performed on feather meal, diets and feces. The Bs was less effective in digesting the feathers, which reduced the ATTDC of dry matter, crude protein, energy and increased the production of fecal DM, but the fecal score was maintained (p > 0.05). The digestible energy of HFMT and HFMBs was 18,590 J/kg and 9196 J/kg, respectively. Bacillus subtilis showed limitation to digest feather in large scale, but the resistance of Bs to digestion was observed since it grown on feces culture.
... External samples were submitted through a standardized submission form, which included information about signalment, presence of concurrent diseases, clinical signs, body condition score (BCS) at sample submission and at/before diagnosis, diet and insulin type and dose. BCS assessment was carried out according to published 9-and 5-point BCS systems [29,30]. Diabetic cats were selected on the basis of the presence of persistent hyperglycaemia and elevated serum fructosamine concentration with all cats requiring insulin treatment. ...
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Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a common feline endocrinopathy, which is similar to human type 2 diabetes (T2DM) in terms of its pathophysiology. T2DM occurs due to peripheral insulin resistance and/or β-cell dysfunction. Several studies have identified genetic and environmental factors that contribute to susceptibility to human T2DM. In cats, environmental factors such as obesity and physical inactivity have been linked with DM, although to date, the only genetic association that has been demonstrated is with a polymorphism in the feline MC4R gene. The aim of this study was to perform a genome-wide association study (GWAS) to identify polymorphisms associated with feline DM. Illumina Infinium 63k iSelect DNA arrays were used to analyse genomic DNA samples from 200 diabetic domestic shorthair cats and 399 non-diabetic control cats. Data was analysed using PLINK whole genome data analysis toolset. A linear model analysis, EMMAX, was done to test for population structure and HAPLOVIEW was used to identify haplotype blocks surrounding the significant SNPs to assist with candidate gene nomination. A total of 47,497 SNPs were available for analysis. Four SNPs were identified with genome-wide significance: chrA2.4150731 (p raw = 9.94 x10 ⁻⁸ ); chrUn17.115508 (p raw = 6.51 x10 ⁻⁸ ); chrUn17.394136 (p raw = 2.53 x10 ⁻⁸ ); chrUn17.314128 (p raw = 2.53 x10 ⁻⁸ ) as being associated with DM. The first SNP is located within chromosome A2, less than 4kb upstream of the dipeptidyl-peptidase-9 ( DPP9 ) gene, a peptidase involved in incretin inactivation. The remaining three SNPs are located within a haplotype block towards the end of chromosome A3; within this region, genes of interest include TMEM18 and ACP1 , both previously associated with T2DM. This study indicates a polygenic component to susceptibility to DM in cats and has highlighted several loci and candidate genes worthy of further investigation.
... A study that evaluated the agreement between a clinical 9-point BCS system and %BF showed that the %BF for the same BCS was higher for neutered indoor cats 3 than previously shown in a group of non-neutered colony cats. 13 We did not compare %BF or nBFV to a BCS because we considered that this would be less reliable than using the FC in regard to reflecting amounts of tBF. However, we found that the mean %BF value for overweight was 34.4 and for obesity 46.1, and that these values are similar to those reported for neutered indoor cats in BCS 6 (34.6 for castrated male cats and 39.3 for spayed female cats) and in BCS 8 (46.9 for castrated male cats and 48.6 for spayed female cats), respectively. ...
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Determination of the nutritional condition, including estimation of amounts of total body fat (tBF), at routine postmortem examination of cats is typically based on subjective visual assessment. Subjective assessment may result in uncertainties regarding degree of overweight, and objective methods that provide a numerical value reflecting the tBF could be valuable to accurately judge excess body fat. We investigated if the falciform fat pad weight (FFPW) was correlated to tBF and could be used to detect overweight and obesity in cats. The FFPW and the femur length (FL) were recorded at postmortem examination in 54 cats and the FFPW:FL ratio (FFR) calculated. Each cat was additionally assigned to a fat category (FC) according to subjective assessment. Computed tomography was used to determine tBF as the body fat percentage (%BF), the body fat volume (BFV), and BFV normalized to animal size (nBFV) in 39 cats. There was strong correlation between the FFPW and the BFV ( r = 0.888) and between the FFR and the nBFV ( r = 0.897). The correlation between the nBFV and %BF was very strong ( r = 0.974). Using a lower FFR cutoff value of 3.5 for obesity and 1.6 for overweight, there was a discrepancy in FC between using the FFR and subjective assessment in 6 of 54 cats (11%). We conclude that the FFPW increases proportionally with tBF and that the FFR provides a method for objective tBF estimation. We suggest introducing the FFR to feline postmortem examination protocols as an objective estimate of tBF.
... Classification of queens was based on continuous monitoring of non-pregnant BCS using the 9-point scale according to Laflamme [32]. ...
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The aim of the present study was to assess factors like litter, individual and maternal effects on kitten overweight at 8 months of age, defined as body condition score (BCS) >= 6, in an intact cat family. To minimize confounding, a homogenized cat population was used. After categorization of the life weight data according to the kittens’ sex, BCS and maternal non-pregnant phenotype (overweight (OM), lean (LM), variable (VM)), analyses including Pearson’s correlation coefficients, two-way ANOVA, linear, linear broken-line regression and repeated measures mixed model analyses were performed. Overweight and OM kittens gained weight most quickly, and females reached their peak weight earlier than males (6.2 +- 0.6 vs. 7.4 +- 0.2 months). In females but not in males the age to reach peak weight differed markedly according to category. Male (5.82 +- 0.09, p < 0.01) and OM kittens’ (5.80 +- 0.11, p = 0.07) BCS at 8 months was higher and they were heavier than their counterparts, from 3 and 5 months onwards, respectively. Litter size negatively correlated with overweight (r = -0.30, p < 0.01) and birthweight showed a positive correlation to live weight (R2 = 0.05, p = 0.05) and monthly weight gain (R2 = 0.18, p < 0.01) over time. This study supports routine monitoring of birthweight, growth rate and maternal phenotype prior to pregnancy to identify kittens at risk for becoming overweight.
... In this study, a total of 28 cats were used, with 18 spayed female and 10 neutered male adult domestic shorthair cats with average age of 2.1 ± 0.03 yr, mean body weight of 4.9 ± 0.8 kg, and mean body condition score of 5.4 ± 0.4 using a 9-point scale (Laflamme, 1997). All cats were housed in Edward R. Madigan Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in a temperature-and light-controlled room, following a 14:10 (L:D) h schedule. ...
Article
Insect meals are novel and potentially sustainable protein sources. The objective of this study was to determine the chemical composition and standardized amino acid digestibility using the cecectomized rooster model of 3 selected insect meals [i.e., speckled cockroach (SC), Madagascar hissing cockroach (MC) and superworm (SW)], and to determine the effects of these insect meals on food intake, apparent total tract digestibility (ATTD) of macronutrients, fecal scores and metabolites of adult cats fed insect- or chicken-based retorted diets. This study consisted of a complete randomized design, with 28 adult cats randomly assigned to 1 of 4 experimental retorted diets: Control (chicken-base diet), SC diet, MC diet, or SW diet. All animal procedures were approved by the University of Illinois Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. All diets were formulated to be complete and balanced and meet or exceed the nutritional requirements of adult cats. The experimental period was 28 d, with the first 7 d allotted for diet adaptation. Total fecal collection was completed during the last 4 d of the experimental period. On d 21, a fresh fecal sample from each cat was collected for determination of fecal metabolites and microbiota. Food was offered twice daily to maintain body weight and body condition score. Among the 3 selected insect meals evaluated, oleic acid, palmitic acid, linoleic acid, and stearic acid were the most prevalent fatty acids. Branched-chain amino acids and arginine were the most preponderant indispensable amino acids in these insect meals. Apparent total tract digestibility of dry matter (DM), organic matter (OM), acid hydrolyzed fat (AHF), and crude protein (CP) did not differ among treatments (P > 0.05) and all diets were well digested by the cats. Similarly, fecal scores did not differ among the treatments and were within ideal range. No differences (P > 0.05) in fecal metabolite concentrations or microbiota diversity were observed among cats fed different experimental diets; only a few genera from Firmicutes and Bacteroidota phyla differ (P < 0.05) in cats fed SW diet in contrast with other dietary treatments. In conclusion, the selected insect meals evaluated herein are rich in linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid for cats. Insect-based retorted diets led to comparable results to a chicken-based retorted diet; suggesting that these novel protein sources might be adequate alternative ingredients in feline diets.
... A physical examination was carried out whenever the cat's behavior permitted. Body condition score (BCS) was evaluated from 1 to 9 (14) and clinical signs were explored according to routine clinical examination. Coughing, vomiting, and comorbidities were recorded from the information provided by the owner in response to a standardized patient enrollment questionnaire. ...
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Heartworm (HTW) infection in cats is associated with persistent pulmonary pathology, even when clinical signs are absent. Treatment options for cats are limited once infected, making prevention an important topic for discussion with cat owners. In Brazil, tests to detect feline HTW infections are unavailable, likely leading to an underestimation of its impact on the wellbeing of cats. The present study investigated the seroprevalence of HTW antigen in cats living in an area with high canine HTW prevalence and investigated risk factors and clinical signs associated with HTW disease in cats from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Clinical examinations were conducted, and serological evaluations performed with a point-of-care test (SNAP ® Feline Triple ® Test, IDEXX Laboratories, Inc.). A total of 586 cats were examined. The HTW antigen seroprevalence was 1.2%. Heartworm positive results were significantly associated with vomiting and abnormal lung sounds. Results from this study indicate that cats residing in areas of high canine HTW prevalence should have HTW disease as a differential diagnosis when presenting with compatible clinical signs. Veterinarians should prioritize client education and promote regular use of effective prophylaxis to protect feline health.
... A 9-point system was used to assign body condition score (BCS) to each of the cats (9 = obese, 5 = optimal, and 1 = extremely underweight). 15 Their ages, sex and weights were also recorded. When not being evaluated, the cats were housed in 2 groups of 3 to 5 cats and fed ad libitum. ...
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Background: Erythromycin, a macrolide antibiotic with motilin agonist properties, shortens gastric emptying (GE) time in healthy cats. Azithromycin, another macrolide antibiotic, is effective for treatment of gastric paresis in people. Objectives: To evaluate the effects of azithromycin on GE and gastric motility in healthy cats in comparison with erythromycin (positive control) and placebo. Animals: Eight healthy purpose-bred cats. Methods: Prospective, blinded, crossover study. Cats received either azithromycin (3.5 mg/kg PO q24h), erythromycin (1 mg/kg PO q8h), or placebo for 24 hours before and during evaluation of GE. A validated method using ultrasound for sequential measurements of antral area as well as amplitude and frequency of contractions was used to assess GE and evaluate gastric antral motility postprandially over an 8-hour period. Results: GE was significantly faster (P < .05) after administration of azithromycin and erythromycin when compared to placebo in the late phase of fractional emptying from 75% (mean ± SD: 327 ± 51 minutes, 327 ± 22 minutes, and 367 ± 29 minutes, respectively), to 95% fractional emptying (399 ± 52 minutes, 404 ± 11 minutes, and 444 ± 24 minutes, respectively). The drugs had no significant effect on antral motility variables at any time point. Conclusions and clinical importance: Azithromycin and erythromycin shorten GE time in a comparable manner in healthy cats. Evaluation of their efficacy in cats with gastric dysmotility is warranted.
... However, owners were not specifically instructed against the use of oral flavoured medication, such as deworming medication or toothpaste. Owners were asked to follow the feeding instructions on the pet food label according to current body weight and to adjust daily calories to maintain current body weight and condition if the cat was at an ideal condition or over-conditioned and to achieve and then maintain an ideal body condition if the body condition score was 3/9 or below 25 . Control cats were not given any dietary intervention. ...
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Abstract The effect of a hydrolyzed protein diet on the fecal microbiota has not been studied in feline chronic enteropathy (CE). Our study aimed to (1) compare the fecal microbiota of cats with CE to control cats with no gastrointestinal signs and (2) determine the effect of a hydrolyzed protein diet on the fecal microbiota of cats with CE and whether this differs between dietary responders and non-responders. The fecal microbiome of cats with CE (n = 36) showed decreased α-diversity in terms of genus richness (P = 0.04) and increased β-diversity in terms of Bray–Curtis Dissimilarity (P
... In the first two experiments, the body condition was scored using the Waltham S.H.A.P.E. system (Alexander et al., 2010), after which the procedures at the facilities changed to the Nestlé PURINA Body Condition System (Laflamme, 1997). Fecal consistency was scored throughout the study, using the Waltham system (Moxham, 2001), and the abdomen of the cats were checked for intestinal upset if caretakes found feces with scores of 4 or higher. ...
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Overweight and obesity are common in global pet cat populations which makes it important to understand how properties of food affect appetite (food motivation). In four experiments, we studied this by using a model of operant conditioning for assessing appetite in which cats could press a lever for food rewards. There was no effect of protein status on motivation for protein, when evaluated in a cross-over design with cats receiving low protein (LP) or high protein (HP) foods for 14 days. Cats obtained similar numbers of HP and LP rewards, irrespective of whether their daily food was HP or LP (mixed-effects model, P=0.550 for food × reward, P=0.151 for reward). High dietary protein reduced food motivation when we regressed protein levels in 12 commercial foods (12.0 to 27.4 g crude protein/MJ metabolizable energy; P=0.022) fed for 2 days and tested at 5 h postprandially on the third day whereas fiber levels were without effect (3.8 to 17.8 g non-starch polysaccharides/MJ; P=0.992). Dietary fiber may reduce appetite depending on its physicochemical properties and we tested the effect of a gelling fiber (alginate), viscous fiber (psyllium) and a fermentable fiber (inulin). Cats received test foods as well as control foods for 3 days and were tested on the third day at 3 h (alginate), 5 h (psyllium) or 8 h (inulin) postprandially. Enriching the food with alginate (P=0.379) or psyllium (P=0.153) did not affect the number of rewards obtained, but the feeding of the inulin-enriched food did make the cats obtain fewer rewards than when they received the control food (P=0.001). Finally, cooking or grinding of dietary meat increased the number of rewards obtained by cats, on day 3 at 3 h postprandial, without evidence for additive effects of these treatments (P=0.014 for grinding × cooking). This study shows that dietary content of protein or fiber, and the grinding or cooking of meat, all affect appetite in cats as expected, though some predicted effects remained undetected and clearly details regarding food properties matter. These and future findings can guide the designing of foods that promote satiety and prevent over-eating in meal-fed cats.
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El objetivo del estudio fue determinar los factores asociados a la presentación de obesidad en perros atendidos en la Clínica de Animales Menores de la Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria de la Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos durante 2017. Se trabajó con 89 perros y se determinó el sexo, raza y condición corporal; asimismo, la edad, actividad física, esterilización (sí/no) y tipo de alimentación fueron obtenidos mediante una encuesta a los dueños de los perros. La condición corporal estimada permitió clasificar a los perros entre obesos y no obesos. La edad promedio fue 7.7 años (0-16 años), siendo 50.6% (n=45) de sexo hembra. El 47.2% (n=42) estaba esterilizado y 28.1% (n=25) fue identificado como mestizo. El 46.1% (n=41) consumía alimento balanceado como parte de su dieta y el 74.2% (n=66) realizaba actividad física de manera regular. El 60.7% (n=54) fue considerado obeso. Se evidenciaron asociaciones significativas con la presentación de obesidad para una dieta basada en alimento casero [OR 11.5; 95%IC: 2.96-44.65], raza pura en comparación a los mestizos [OR 4.34; 95%CI: 1.03-18.32] y edad entre 8 y 12 años en comparación con perros de 1 año [OR 20.13; 95%CI:2.30-176.02]. No se encontró asociación con el sexo, actividad física y esterilización.
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The effect of partial substitution of maize for sorghum, containing condensed tannins (CT), with or without the addition of a purified hydrolysable tannin extract (HT), on dog apparent digestibility and glycemic response were evaluated. The trial was conducted with eight adult dogs distributed in four treatments: (M) 50% maize; (MS) 25% maize + 25% sorghum; (MHT) 50% maize + 0.10% HT; (MSHT) 25% maize + 25% sorghum + 0.10% HT; in a balanced incomplete Latin square design in three periods, with two dogs per diet, per period. Data were analyzed by ANOVA procedure and glycemic response by repeated measures ANOVA over time (P < 0.05). The phenolic compounds analyzed were not detected after extrusion process, with a reduction mainly in diets containing sorghum. There were no differences in the digestibility coefficients of nutrients and energy between the dietary treatments (P > 0.05). Fecal and urinary characteristics were not changed by the addition of sorghum and HT (P > 0.05). The fecal score remained within the ideal classification as hard, dry, firm stools. A moderate increase in fecal pH was observed on dogs fed diets containing sorghum (P = 0.0948). Additionally, the partial replacement of maize for sorghum associated or not with HT do not alter the glycemic aspects evaluated among dietary treatments (P > 0.05). Availability of nutrients from maize and sorghum were similar. Tannins did not interfere in the nutritional capacity of the ingredients.
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Working dogs are athletes, but have a wide variety of work types and durations that impact their dietary needs. Their basic nutritional needs do not change: all dogs need a complete and balanced diet, fed in proper proportions to maintain optimal body condition. However, with increasing muscle work and endurance, the amounts of specific nutrients (particularly the macronutrients, protein, fat, and carbohydrates) must be adjusted. This article provides an overview of the key aspects of working canine nutrition and provides the nutritional science behind the recommendations made.
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Overweight and obesity are growing health problems in domestic cats, increasing the risks of insulin resistance, lipid dyscrasias, neoplasia, cardiovascular disease, and decreasing longevity. The signature of obesity in the feline gut microbiota has not been studied at the whole-genome metagenomic level. We performed whole-genome shotgun metagenomic sequencing in the fecal samples of eight overweight/obese and eight normal cats housed in the same research environment. We obtained 271 Gbp of sequences and generated a 961-Mbp de novo reference contig assembly, with 1.14 million annotated microbial genes. In the obese cat microbiome, we discovered a significant reduction in microbial diversity (P < 0.01) and Firmicutes abundance (P = 0.005), as well as decreased Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes ratios (P = 0.02), which is the inverse of obese human/mouse microbiota. Linear discriminant analysis and quantitative PCR (qPCR) validation revealed significant increases of Bifidobacterium sp., Olsenella provencensis, Dialister sp.CAG:486, and Campylobacter upsaliensis as the hallmark of obese microbiota among 400 enriched species, whereas 1,525 bacterial species have decreased abundance in the obese microbiome. Phascolarctobacterium succinatutens and an uncharacterized Erysipelotrichaceae bacterium are highly abundant (>0.05%) in the normal gut with over 400-fold depletion in the obese microbiome. Fatty acid synthesis-related pathways are significantly overrepresented in the obese compared with the normal cat microbiome. In conclusion, we discovered dramatically decreased microbial diversity in obese cat gut microbiota, suggesting potential dysbiosis. A panel of seven significantly altered, highly abundant species can serve as a microbiome indicator of obesity. Our findings in the obese cat microbiome composition, abundance, and functional capacities provide new insights into feline obesity. IMPORTANCE Obesity affects around 45% of domestic cats, and licensed drugs for treating feline obesity are lacking. Physical exercise and calorie restrictions are commonly used for weight loss but with limited efficacy. Through comprehensive analyses of normal and obese cat gut bacteria flora, we identified dramatic shifts in the obese gut microbiome, including four bacterial species significantly enriched and two species depleted in the obese cats. The key bacterial community and functional capacity alterations discovered from this study will inform new weight management strategies for obese cats, such as evaluations of specific diet formulas that alter the microbiome composition, and the development of prebiotics and probiotics that promote the increase of beneficial species and the depletion of obesity-associated species. Interestingly, these bacteria identified in our study were also reported to affect the weight loss success in human patients, suggesting translational potential in human obesity.
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Objectives The aim of this study was to determine the occurrence of dural puncture, indicated by cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) outflow, in cats receiving neuraxial anesthesia through a lumbosacral injection guided by a pop sensation method. Methods This was an observational, retrospective study. Cats that were scheduled for lumbosacral neuraxial anesthesia were included. Medical records were analyzed to investigate: (1) demographic data; (2) neuraxial anesthesia performed (epidural/spinal); (3) type of needle used, including gauge and length; (4) presence of CSF (yes/no) and/or blood (yes/no) in the hub of the needle; and (5) flicking of the tail during needle advancement (yes/no). Results A total of 94 medical records were analyzed. A 22 G 50 mm Tuohy needle was used in all cats scheduled for an epidural injection (n = 60), whereas a 22 G 40 mm Quincke needle was used in all cats scheduled for an intrathecal injection (n = 34). CSF outflow was detected in 55/60 (91.7%) cats in which a Tuohy needle was used, and 34/34 (100%) of the cats in which a Quincke needle was used ( P = 0.15). Flicking of the tail was detected in 41/60 (68.3%) and in 24/34 (70.6%) injections with Tuohy and Quincke needles, respectively ( P >0.99). Traces of blood, but not active blood outflow, were detected via staining of the first drops of CSF in 2/34 cats in which Quincke needles were used and in none of the cats in which Tuohy needles were used ( P = 0.12). Conclusions and relevance This study shows that the lumbosacral approach for neuraxial anesthesia in cats may result in a dural sac puncture when 22 G Quincke or Tuohy needles are used. The pop sensation method should be deemed effective in predicting intrathecal but not epidural needle placement.
Article
Spay and neuter surgeries are useful in controlling pet populations, but increase obesity risk due to increased appetite, decreased metabolic rate and decreased energy expenditure. Dietary management may help limit post-spay weight gain, but few research studies have been conducted in cats. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of a high-protein, high-fiber diet (HPHF) compared to a moderate-protein, moderate-fiber diet (MPMF) in female cats following spay surgery. Twenty healthy female cats (9.5±0.1 mo) were used. After a 4-wk baseline phase with cats fed MPMF to maintain body weight (BW), 16 cats were spayed and allotted to MPMF (n=8) or HPHF (n=8), with the remaining cats being sham-operated and fed MPMF (n=4). Cats were fed to maintain BW for 12 wk, then allowed to eat up to twice that amount for another 12 wk. Daily food intake, twice weekly BW and twice weekly body condition scores (BCS) were assessed. Back fat thickness (BF) using ultrasound, body composition using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA), feline body mass index (fBMI), body fat percentage estimates using zoometry measurements, serum metabolites, and voluntary physical activity levels were measured prior to spay (wk 0) and every 6 wk post-spay. A treatment*time effect was observed for food intake (g/d), but not caloric intake (kcal ME/d). Caloric intake was affected by time and treatment, being reduced over the first 12 wk and reduced at higher amounts in HPHF and MPMF cats vs. sham cats. BW, BCS and body fat percentage were affected over time. Treatment*time effects were observed for blood urea nitrogen, alkaline phosphatase, and fructosamine, while blood triglycerides, total cholesterol, creatinine, total protein, phosphorus, and bicarbonate were affected by time. Physical activity was reduced over time. Our results demonstrate that spay surgery affects food intake, BW, metabolism, and physical activity of cats. Dietary intervention in this study, however, led to minor changes.
Article
Objectives To describe the ultrasonographic (US) anatomy of the sublumbar region at the level of the second lumbar vertebra (L2), to assess the feasibility of US-guided quadratus lumborum (QL) injections and to evaluate the dye distribution pattern in feline cadavers. Study design Descriptive feline cadaver study Animals A total of eight cat cadavers. Methods Using a linear probe (6 to 14 MHz), with the cadavers in lateral recumbency, the QL and psoas muscles (Pm) were identified at the level of L2 and landmarks recorded. Using an in-plane technique, a spinal needle was inserted in a ventro-dorsal direction to reach the interfascial plane between the QL and Pm. Using a ropivacaine, dye and iohexol solution a total volume of 0.4 mL kg⁻¹ was injected. Computed tomography (CT) scanning and anatomic dissection were performed to evaluate spread of injectate. Presence of dye on the sympathetic trunk was compared between assessment methods using Kappa coefficient of agreement (κ). Results Using US-guidance the QL-Pm interfascial plane was identified and dye solution was present in the target fascial plane in all animals. Injectate was distributed on the ventral roots of the spinal nerves between the first and third lumbar vertebrae in 6/8 cats, and on the sympathetic trunk from the thirteenth thoracic to the third lumbar vertebrae in 7/8 cats. Dye was found on the major splanchnic nerve in 7/8 cats and on the minor splanchnic nerve and coeliac ganglion pathways in all animals. Agreement between dissection and CT images dye distribution on the sympathetic trunk was κ = 0.72. Conclusions and clinical relevance The US-guided QL injection was feasible and injectate was present in the QL-Pm interfascial plane in all feline cadavers. In vivo studies are warranted to evaluate the analgesic efficacy of this technique for abdominal surgical procedures.
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In previous studies, it has been demonstrated that, similar to general practitioners, veterinarians find it difficult to discuss overweight in dogs. This study aimed to provide insight in the barriers and motivators for veterinarians to discuss overweight in dogs and to compare the results with findings from human medicine. Sub‐hypotheses were postulated based on existing literature to investigate if lack of time, fear of offending clients, or lack of skills were potential barriers, and if feeling responsible and feeling compassion were potential motivators for veterinarians to discuss overweight in dogs. To this end, an online survey (n = 59) was conducted. Furthermore, 15 small animal clinicians working in general practice were interviewed by semi‐structured face‐to‐face interviews. Results from the online survey indicated that veterinarians find it sometimes difficult to discuss overweight in dogs. Veterinarians who responded to the online survey did not experience strong barriers but did make use of motivators (e.g. feeling responsible and feeling compassion) when discussing overweight in dogs. Interestingly, results from the semi‐structured face‐to‐face interviews showed that the responding veterinarians did experience strong barriers, as well as motivators, when discussing overweight in dogs with their clients. The most prominent barrier was customer dissatisfaction, whereas lack of time and lack of skills were also experienced. The most prominent motivator was feeling responsible for animal health and preventive veterinary medicine. These findings were strikingly similar to previous research on discussing childhood overweight by general practitioners. To improve treatment and prevention of overweight in dogs, veterinarians need more communication skills and should be more aware of the motivators that drive their self‐motivation. Improving awareness on overweight and its comorbidities should be a One Health issue.
Article
Objectives: To determine the prevalence of iatrogenic heart murmurs in a population of apparently healthy cats and to investigate factors that may predispose cats to iatrogenic murmurs. Materials and methods: Apparently healthy cats presenting for routine examinations were prospectively enrolled. Following a physical examination to confirm there were no abnormalities, a cardiac examination was performed before and during a provocative manoeuvre performed independently by two clinicians. The provocative manoeuvre was performed on the right side of the chest wall by applying gentle pressure with a stethoscope to ascertain whether a murmur became audible, graded using a modified descriptive scale (soft/moderate). The cat's heart rate before and during the provocative manoeuvre and their age, sex, body condition score and bodyweight were recorded. Results: One hundred and six cats were prospectively enrolled. The average prevalence of iatrogenic murmurs was 28.2% with good interobserver agreement recorded on both the presence (kappa 0.67 and 0.62) and grade of the murmur (kappa 0.6 and 0.53). A significant association was noted between age and body condition score, with iatrogenic murmurs more likely in cats with increasing age and decreasing body condition score. There was no association between heart rate and the presence of an iatrogenic murmur. Clinical significance: Iatrogenic murmurs are a common finding in cats with increasing prevalence noted in older and lean cats. Iatrogenic murmurs should therefore be considered as a differential diagnosis in a cat when an audible soft systolic right-sided murmur occurs with gentle pressure application to the chest wall during auscultation.
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An 11‐year‐old, 3.3‐kg, male neutered, domestic longhair cat with poorly controlled diabetes mellitus was referred for surgical excision of a glucagonoma, a pancreatic tumour that produces an excessive amount of glucagon. Methadone was administered intravenously and anaesthesia was induced intravenously with alfaxalone and maintained with sevoflurane in 100% oxygen. An extradural catheter was placed at the lumbo‐sacral site and its tip was advanced approximately to the second lumbar vertebrae. Preservative‐free buprenorphine and 0.5% levobupivacaine were administered. Intraoperatively, haemodynamic changes were monitored using a non‐invasive cardiac output monitor. During anaesthesia, hyperglycaemia and hypotension were the two main complications recorded. Postoperative analgesia was provided administering 0.25% levobupivacaine extradurally every 4 hours for the first 24 hours. The blood glucose concentration decreased postoperatively, and insulin administration was restarted 7 hours after surgery when the cat started eating voluntarily. No other complications occurred, and the cat was discharged from the hospital 72 hours after the surgery.
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O Brasil possui papel de destaque no cenário da suinocultura mundial, não sendo possível hoje elencar os principais players do mercado da proteína suína sem citá-lo. No entanto, um dos gargalos existentes está nos controles internos deficientes e na gestão empírica da atividade, o que faz com que não seja possível conhecer a informação que deveria nortear a tomada de decisão quanto ao uso dos fatores de produção e recursos: o custo do suíno produzido. Por meio do conhecimento dos custos de produção é possível realizar a gestão estratégica e planejada da atividade, obtendo melhores resultados. Neste sentido, o presente estudo teve dois objetivos principais: (i) desenvolver um modelo matemático para cálculo dos custos de produção de suínos, que permita análises econômicas da atividade e sirva como ferramenta de gestão em propriedades comerciais; e (ii) desenvolver um índice de custo de produção para acompanhar o comportamento e a evolução dos custos de produção do suíno ao longo do tempo. Dois estudos de caso foram realizados em propriedades relevantes do estado de São Paulo para auxiliar na caracterização da suinocultura independente em ciclo completo, bem como para definição das características das propriedades representativas, e estas foram tomadas como base para a construção do modelo e do indicador de custos. O modelo de cálculo foi desenvolvido utilizando o software Microsoft Excel®. Todos os itens de custo foram considerados conforme preconiza a Teoria Econômica Neoclássica dos Custos e alocados na ordem: custos variáveis; custos fixos operacionais; e custos de oportunidade do capital e da terra; sendo o custo total a somatória de todos os custos envolvidos na produção suinícola. Foram então acompanhados os preços dos insumos e calculados mensalmente os custos de produção para as granjas representativas, permitindo a elaboração dos índices de custo de produção do suíno paulista (ICPS). As granjas representativas foram categorizadas segundo o número de matrizes alojadas, sendo ICPS500 uma categorização para granjas com até 500 matrizes, e ICPS2000 para granjas com 501 a 2000 matrizes alojadas. Um dos grandes diferenciais deste trabalho está no fato da consolidação do método de cálculo e do ICPS, que já possui oito edições publicadas. O modelo desenvolvido é eficaz em sua proposta de gerar informações importantes para a tomada de decisões estratégicas nas granjas, bem como o indicador possui potencial para colaborar com a organização e transparência do setor, trazendo informações acerca da situação mercadológica da cadeia suinícola.
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Canine obesity is associated with reduced lifespan and metabolic dysfunction, but can be managed by dietary intervention. This study aimed to determine the effects of restricted feeding of a high-protein, high-fiber (HPHF) diet and weight loss on body composition, physical activity, blood metabolites, and fecal microbiota and metabolites of overweight dogs. Twelve spayed female dogs [age: 5.5±1.1 yr; body weight (BW): 14.8±2.0 kg, body condition score (BCS): 7.9±0.8] were fed a HPHF diet during a 4-wk baseline phase to maintain BW. After baseline (wk 0), dogs were first fed 80% of baseline intake and then adjusted to target 1.5% weekly weight loss for 24 wk. Body composition using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and blood samples (wk 0, 6, 12, 18, 24), voluntary physical activity (wk 0, 7, 15, 23), and fresh fecal samples for microbiota and metabolite analysis (wk 0, 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 24) were measured over time. Microbiota data were analyzed using QIIME 2. All data were analyzed statistically over time using SAS 9.4. After 24 wk, dogs lost 31.2% of initial BW and had 1.43±0.73% weight loss per wk. BCS decreased (P<0.0001) by 2.7 units, fat mass decreased (P<0.0001) by 3.1 kg, and fat percentage decreased (P<0.0001) by 3.1 kg and 11.7% with weight loss. Many serum metabolites and hormones were altered, with triglycerides, leptin, insulin, C-reactive protein, and interleukin-6 decreasing (P<0.05) with weight loss. Relative abundances of fecal Bifidobacterium, Coriobacteriaceae UCG-002, undefined Muribaculaceae, Allobaculum, Eubacterium, Lachnospira, Negativivibacillus, Ruminococcus gauvreauii group, uncultured Erysipelotrichaceae, and Parasutterella increased (P<0.05), whereas Prevotellaceae Ga6A1 group, Catenibacterium, Erysipelatoclostridium, Fusobacterium, Holdemanella, Lachnoclostridium, Lactobacillus, Megamonas, Peptoclostridium, Ruminococcus gnavus group, and Streptococcus decreased (P<0.01) with weight loss. Despite the number of significant changes, a state of dysbiosis was not observed in overweight dogs. Fecal ammonia and secondary bile acids decreased, while fecal valerate increased with weight loss. Several correlations between gut microbial taxa and biological parameters were observed. Our results suggest that restricted feeding of a HPHF diet and weight loss promotes fat mass loss, minimizes lean mass loss, reduces inflammatory marker and triglyceride concentrations, and modulates fecal microbiota phylogeny and activity in overweight dogs.
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Shear wave elastography (SWE) has been applied as a noninvasive method for predicting regional lymph node (LN) metastases in human and veterinary patients. However, published studies describing standardized protocols and repeatability of this technique are currently lacking. The objective of this prospective, pilot, observer agreement study was to determine whether different shear wave velocity (SWV) measurements obtained in different regions of presumed normal canine LNs would be repeatable. Two imagers consecutively performed shear wave elastography of submandibular, superficial inguinal, and popliteal LNs in 10, clinically healthy adult dogs. Ten elastograms of each LN were acquired by each imager. In each adequate elastogram, three regions of interest (ROIs) were placed in the softest and stiffest region of the LN. Additionally, one ROI was drawn covering the entire LN. In each ROI, mean, median, and maximum SWVs were calculated. Mean values for the mean, median, and maximum SWVs varied from 2.33 to 3.10 m/s, 2.32 to 3.10 m/s, and 2.61 to 4.09 m/s, respectively. Intra- and interobserver agreements were acceptable. Superficial inguinal LNs demonstrated the highest intra- and interobserver agreement, followed by the popliteal and the submandibular LNs, respectively. Using the different measurements (mean, median, or maximum SWVs) had no significant effect on the intra- and interobserver variability, neither did the region (softest, stiffest, or entire LN). Findings indicated that all evaluated measurements and regions could be used to obtain reliable elastography data of presumed normal canine LNs. Clinical trials in dogs with cancer are necessary to compare SWVs of metastatic LNs with the reported SWVs and evaluate whether various measurements and regions can also be used in metastatic LNs.
Article
Objectives The aim of this study was to determine whether high-protein and high-carbohydrate diets exert differential effects on serum cholesterol, triglyceride and fructosamine concentrations in healthy cats. Methods A randomised, crossover diet trial was performed in 35 healthy shelter cats. Following baseline health assessments, cats were randomised into groups receiving either a high-protein or high-carbohydrate diet for 4 weeks. The cats were then fed a washout diet for 4 weeks before being transitioned to whichever of the two studied diets they had not yet received. Fasting serum cholesterol, triglyceride and fructosamine concentrations were determined at the end of each 4-week diet period. Results Cats on the high-carbohydrate diet had significantly lower serum cholesterol ( P <0.001) concentrations compared with baseline measurements. Cats on the high-protein diet had significantly higher serum cholesterol ( P <0.001) and triglyceride ( P <0.001) concentrations, yet lower fructosamine ( P <0.001) concentrations compared with baseline measurements. In contrast, overweight cats (body condition score [BCS] >5) had lower cholesterol ( P = 0.007) and triglyceride ( P = 0.032) concentrations on the high-protein diet than cats within other BCS groups. Conclusions and relevance Diets higher in protein and lower in carbohydrates appear beneficial for short-term glucose control in healthy cats. A high-protein diet was associated with significantly elevated cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations in healthy cats, even though the increase was significantly less pronounced in cats with a BCS >5. This finding suggests that overweight cats process high-protein diets, cholesterol and triglycerides differently than leaner cats.
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Obesity leads to insulin resistance (IR) and is a major risk factor for the development of diabetes mellitus in cats. Prevention of obesity and obesity-induced IR is difficult, and reliable long-term strategies are currently lacking. Retinoid-related orphan receptor gamma (RORγ) was recently identified as an important transcription factor in the development of large insulin-resistant adipocytes in mice and humans. RORγ negatively affects adipocyte differentiation through expression of its target gene matrix metalloproteinase 3 (MMP3) and promotes the development of large insulin-resistant adipocytes. Preliminary studies in mice showed that RORγ can be inhibited by its ligand tetra-hydroxylated bile acid (THBA). In the present study, serum THBA levels were determined in healthy and diabetic cats. Moreover, potential side effects and the effects of THBA supplementation on adipocyte size, mRNA expression of RORγ, MMP3, interleukin 6, tumor necrosis factor α, adiponectin and leptin in feline subcutaneous adipocytes and insulin sensitivity were investigated in healthy normal weight cats. Thirteen healthy and 13 diabetic cats were used for determination of serum THBA level, and six healthy normal-weight cats were included in a feeding trial. Similar THBA levels were determined in serum of healthy and diabetic cats. Supplementation of 5 mg/kg THBA for 8 wk did not cause any negative effect on feeding behavior, general condition and blood parameters of tested cats. It significantly reduced adipocyte size and mRNA expression of MMP3, interleukin 6, and tumor necrosis factor α in adipocytes, while mRNA expression of adiponectin significantly increased and mRNA expression of RORγ and leptin remained unchanged. Administration of THBA did not influence fasting blood glucose levels or the response of cats to acute insulin administration. Based on these results, THBA is palatable and is considered safe for use in cats. It reduces expression of MMP3 and promotes the development of small adipocytes with increased expression of adiponectin and reduced expression of interleukin 6 and tumor necrosis factor α. Further studies are recommended to evaluate the effect of THBA on adipocyte size and insulin sensitivity in obese cats.
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Primary hyperlipidaemia in Schnauzer is characterized by increased plasma triglycerides (TG) and/or total cholesterol (TC) concentration and is associated with an increased risk of developing pancreatitis, insulin resistance and seizures. In humans, omega-3 fatty acids in addition to a low-fat diet can be used to reduce TG and TC. This study evaluated the therapeutic efficacy of omega-3 fatty acids associated to a diet management with two different fat content in Schnauzer with primary hyperlipidaemia. Eighteen dogs with primary hyperlipidaemia were divided into two groups: group 1, n = 10, 8 females, 2 males, age (mean ± standard deviation) of 7.13 ± 2.70 years and body weight (BW) (mean ± standard deviation) of 7.25 ± 1.22 kg were treated with fish oil (approximately 730 mg/day of omega-3) associated with a low-fat and low-calorie diet (approximately 24g of fat/1000 kcal) for 90 days (T90); and group 2, n = 8 dogs, 6 females, 2 males, with 7.0 ± 1.77 years old and average BW of 8.36 ± 1.51 kg, treated with fish oil (approximately 730 mg/day of omega-3) and maintenance diet with moderate amount of fat (approximately 33g of fat/1000 kcal) for 90 days. Plasma TG and TC concentrations and lipoprotein (LP) profile (VLDL, LDL, HDL) were evaluated before and after treatment. TG and TC serum concentrations, expressed in mg/dL (mean ± standard deviation), before and after treatment in group 1 were: TG = 391.30 ± 487.86 (T0) and 118.7 ± 135.21 (T90); TC = 308.2 ± 63.06 (T0) and 139 ± 36.91 (T90). As for group 2, TG = 391.63 ± 336.89 (T0) and 250.75 ± 211.56 (T90); TC = 257.25 ± 92.88 (T0) and 207.25 ± 63.79 (T90). A reduction (p
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Objectives The objectives of this study were to determine whether a technology-enhanced weight-loss program, using a home pet health technology ecosystem, is an effective tool in feline weight-loss management in multiple-cat households and to evaluate its impact on cat behavior. Methods The study was a prospective parallel unmasked block-randomized controlled trial comparing two weight loss intervention groups: (1) traditional group with dietary restriction alone (n = 9); (2) technology group that used dietary restriction, digital scales, smart feeders, activity monitors and pet treat cameras (n = 6). A 12-week weight-loss program of client-owned indoor-only two- or three-cat households with at least one overweight cat was conducted in Canada and the USA. Owner impressions of the technology, weight loss rates, smart feeder data, activity monitor data and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) were assessed. Results The study was completed by 9/15 traditional group and 6/10 technology group cats. Dropouts were mainly due to owner issues unrelated to the study. The pet health technology ecosystem received favorable reviews (six responders). Smart feeders and home scales were perceived as valuable additions, while activity monitors and pet treat cameras were valued lower. The average weekly weight-loss rate (percent loss of initial body weight) was higher ( P = 0.036) in the technology group (0.694%) than in the traditional group (0.175%). Although not associated with weight-loss rates, technology group cats trended toward grazing feeding patterns and decreased daily activity counts, while HRQoL increased, on average, for all cats. Conclusions and relevance This introductory investigation suggests that a technology-enhanced weight-loss program would be accepted by cat owners and may deliver advantageous outcomes in multiple-cat households, providing an effective and practical tool in feline weight-loss strategies that will continue to evolve as new technologies become available. It also illustrates the potential value of data gathered from home monitoring devices and digital diaries, providing deeper insights into pet behavior.
Article
Objective To develop an ultrasound-guided interfascial plane technique for injection of the pudendal nerve near its sacral origin in cats. Study design Prospective, randomized, anatomical study. Animals A group of 12 feline cadavers. Methods Gross and ultrasound anatomy of the ischiorectal fossa, the pudendal nerve relationship with parasacral structures, and the interfascial plane were described. Computed tomography was employed to describe a cranial transgluteal approach to the pudendal nerve. Bilateral ultrasound-guided injections were performed in eight cadavers using low [(LV) 0.1 mL kg–1] or high volume [(HV) 0.2 mL kg–1] of ropivacaine–dye solution. Dissections were performed to determine successful staining of the pudendal nerve (>1 cm) and inadvertent staining of the sciatic nerve, and any rectal, urethral or intravascular puncture. Pudendal nerve staining in groups LV and HV were compared using Fisher's exact and Wilcoxon rank-sum test as appropriate (p = 0.05). Results The pudendal nerve and its rectal perineal and sensory branches coursed through the ischiorectal fossa, dorsomedial to the ischiatic spine. The pudendal nerve was not identified ultrasonographically, but the target plane was identified between the sacral transverse process, the ischiatic spine, the pelvic fascia and the rectum and it was filled with dye solution. Both branches of the pudendal nerve were completely stained 75% and 87.5% in groups LV and HV, respectively (p = 1.00). The dorsal aspect of the sciatic nerve was partially stained in 37% of injections in group HV. Rectal or urethral puncture, and intravascular injection were never observed. Conclusions and clinical relevance In cats, ultrasound-guided cranial transgluteal injection successfully stained the pudendal nerve in at least 75% of attempts, regardless of injectate volume. Group HV had a greater probability of sciatic nerve staining.
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p>La prueba de marcha de 6 minutos (PM6M) se realizó para medir la tolerancia al ejercicio submáximo en pacientes con ciertas condiciones de salud y en la que se evalúan parámetros fisiológicos y distancia recorrida. Como parte del examen clínico, se realizó un estudio experimental de tipo transversal incluyendo tres grupos de animales: Grupo 1: braquiocefálicos, Grupo 2: obesos, Grupo 3: controles. Antes de comenzar se midieron las frecuencias cardiaca y respiratoria en cada individuo. Luego caminaron por seis minutos en un recorrido de 30 metros. Al final, los pacientes fueron reevaluados y se estableció la distancia recorrida (grupo 1: 349 +/- 65 m; grupo 2: 341 +/- 96 m; grupo 3: 414 +/- 65 m (p<0.05). Frecuencia cardiaca en reposo: grupo 1: 98 +/- 15 lpm, grupo 3: 84 +/- 11 lpm (p<0.05). No hubo diferencias entre grupos 1 y 2. Frecuencia cardiaca al final del recorrido: grupo 1: 112 +/- 12 lpm, grupo 2: 105 +/- 18 lpm, grupo 3: 88 +/- 11 lpm (p=0.001). Frecuencia respiratoria: no hubo diferencias entre los 3 grupos antes de comenzar la prueba, pero sí al final del recorrido: grupo 1: 50 +/- 11 rpm con incremento de 15 +/- 7.7 rpm al finalizar el recorrido, grupo 2: 54 +/- 11 rpm con incremento de 18 +/- 7 rpm al finalizar el recorrido y grupo 3: 39 +/- 8.2 rpm con incremento de 5.8 +/- 4.4 rpm al finalizar el recorrido (p<0.05 grupo 1 y 2 vs. 3). Braquiocefálicos y obesos no presentaron diferencias en las variables evaluadas y esto sugiere que los sistemas cardiovascular y respiratorio parecen estar sometidos a condiciones fisiopatológicas similares durante el ejercicio. Ello abre una puerta en la investigación sobre los efectos de la obesidad en caninos. </p
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Antibiotic treatment in early life influences gastrointestinal (GI) microbial composition and function. In humans, the resultant intestinal dysbiosis is associated with an increased risk for certain diseases later in life. The objective of this study was to determine the temporal effects of antibiotic treatment on the GI microbiome of young cats. Fecal samples were collected from cats randomly allocated to receive either amoxicillin/clavulanic acid (20 mg/kg q12h) for 20 days (AMC group; 15 cats) or doxycycline (10 mg/kg q24h) for 28 days (DOX group;15 cats) as part of the standard treatment of upper respiratory tract infection. In addition, feces were collected from healthy control cats (CON group;15 cats). All cats were approximately two months of age at enrolment. Samples were collected on days 0 (baseline), 20 or 28 (AMC and DOX, respectively; last day of treatment), 60, 120, and 300. DNA was extracted and sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene and qPCR assays were performed. Fecal microbial composition was different on the last day of treatment for AMC cats, and 1 month after the end of antibiotic treatment for DOX cats, compared to CON cats. Species richness was significantly greater in DOX cats compared to CON cats on the last day of treatment. Abundance of Enterobacteriales was increased, and that of Erysipelotrichi was decreased in cats of the AMC group on the last day of treatment compared to CON cats. The abundance of the phylum Proteobacteria was increased in cats of the DOX group on days 60 and 120 compared to cats of the CON group. Only minor differences in abundances between the treatment groups and the control group were present on day 300. Both antibiotics appear to delay the developmental progression of the microbiome, and this effect is more profound during treatment with amoxicillin/clavulanic acid and one month after treatment with doxycycline. Future studies are required to determine if these changes influence microbiome function and whether they have possible effects on disease susceptibility in cats.
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Overweight and obesity are commonly diagnosed in domestic cats, and undermine cats’ quality of life directly or indirectly via various disease processes known to be associated with overweight and obesity. Epidemiological studies have reported varied overall prevalence among different feline populations, and commonly identified risk factors such as neutering. However, disease associations were not consistently reported. The status of feline overweight and obesity in a referral veterinary teaching hospital in the United States remains undefined as well. The present study used descriptive statistics and logistic regression models to analyze feline medical records obtained at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital at the University of California, Davis from January 2006 to December 2015 and to characterize the prevalence of overweight and obesity, risk factors, and disease associations. In 9,062 feline records analyzed, the overall prevalence of overweight (17.2%; n = 1,560) and obesity (23.8%; n = 2,160) was 41.0%. Neutered, male, and crossbred cats that were in age groups between 3.0 and 14.9 years old and presented with disease processes in orthopedic, dentistry, and urinary categories were positively associated with overweight and obesity. Overweight and obesity are prevalent problems, which can benefit from continual veterinary education emphasizing its importance. Structured disease surveillance plans monitoring these associated factors also help guide further research and ideally can contribute to development of better prevention strategies for overweight and obesity.
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Objectives The objective of this study was to verify the safety of policosanol supplementation for domestic cats. The effects of raw and encapsulated policosanol were compared with positive (L-carnitine) and negative (no supplementation) controls on outcomes of complete blood count, serum biochemistry, energy expenditure, respiratory quotient and physical activity in healthy young adult cats. Methods The study was a replicated 4 × 4 complete Latin square design. Eight cats (four castrated males, four spayed females; mean age 3.0 ± 1.0 years; mean weight 4.36 ± 1.08 kg; mean body condition score 5.4 ± 1.4) were blocked by sex and body weight then randomized to treatment groups: raw policosanol (10 mg/kg body weight), encapsulated policosanol (50 mg/kg body weight), L-carnitine (200 mg/kg body weight) or no supplementation. Treatments were supplemented to a basal diet for 28 days with a 1-week washout between periods. Food was distributed equally between two offerings to ensure complete supplement consumption (first offering) and measure consumption time (second offering). Blood collection (lipid profile, complete blood count, serum biochemistry) and indirect calorimetry (energy expenditure, respiratory quotient) were conducted at days 0, 14 and 28 of each period. Activity monitors were worn 7 days prior to indirect calorimetry and blood collection. Data were analyzed using a repeated measures mixed model (SAS, v.9.4). Results Food intake and body weight were similar among treatments. There was no effect of treatment on lipid profile, serum biochemistry, activity, energy expenditure or respiratory quotient ( P >0.05); however, time to consume a second meal was greatest in cats fed raw policosanol ( P <0.05). Conclusions and relevance These data suggest that policosanol is safe for feline consumption. Further studies with cats demonstrating cardiometabolic risk factors are warranted to confirm whether policosanol therapy is an efficacious treatment for hyperlipidemia and obesity.
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