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1.  Borrelia burgdorferi migrates into joint capsules and causes an up-regulation of interleukin-8 in synovial membranes of dogs experimentally infected with ticks. 
Infection and Immunity  1997;65(4):1273-1285.
Twenty 6-week-old specific-pathogen-free beagles were infected with Borrelia burgdorferi by tick challenge, and five uninfected dogs served as controls. During the study, all dogs were monitored for infection, clinical signs, and antibody response against B. burgdorferi. During episodes of lameness or postmortem, synovial fluids from each dog were examined for volume, cell number, polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMN) content, cell viability, and chemotactic activity. Twenty-five tissues collected postmortem from each dog were tested for interleukin-8 (IL-8) mRNA, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) mRNA, presence of live spirochetes, and histopathological changes. Thirteen infected dogs (group A), which seroconverted rapidly (maximum titers within 50 to 90 days), developed acute and severe mono- or oligoarthritis almost exclusively in the limb closest to the tick bite (median incubation period, 66 days). Synovial fluids of the arthritic joints collected during episodes of lameness had significantly elevated volume, cell count, PMN proportion, cell viability, and chemotactic activity for PMNs. The remaining joints of the same animals contained synovial fluids with elevated chemotactic activity and cell viability. Twelve dogs tested positive for IL-8 mRNA in multiple tissues (synovia, pericardium, and peritoneum), and 10 dogs expressed TNF-alpha mRNA, but only in the tributary lymph nodes of the inflamed joints. Histological examinations revealed severe poly- or oligoarthritis and moderate to severe cortical hyperplasia in draining lymph nodes of the inflamed joints in all 13 dogs. Seven infected dogs with mild or no clinical signs (group B) seroconverted slowly (peak titers after 90 days), and only some joint fluids showed chemotactic activity, which on average was lower than that in inflamed and noninflamed joints from dogs in group A. Four dogs expressed IL-8 mRNA (in the synovia and pericardium), and three dogs had TNF-alpha mRNA in tributary lymph nodes. Histologically, nonsuppurative arthritis was found in multiple joints, and mild to moderate cortical hyperplasia was found in draining lymph nodes. Five uninfected dogs without lameness (group C) had normal synovial fluids and tissues. In all infected dogs, live spirochetes were demonstrated more frequently in tissues of the somatic quadrant closest to the tick bite than in tissues further from the site of infection, suggesting that dissemination of B. burgdorferi occurs more by migration than by blood-borne spread. From these studies employing a canine model of B. burgdorferi infection, we conclude that IL-8 is involved in the pathogenesis of acute Lyme arthritis.
PMCID: PMC175128  PMID: 9119462
Experiments to determine the effect of furnishing an ample supply of sodium chloride on the toxemia of pyloric and intestinal obstruction are reported. A fall in chlorides is the first and seemingly most significant change to take place in the blood after pyloric and intestinal obstruction. The chloride is apparently utilized by the body as a protective measure against the primary toxic substance. Two dogs with pyloric obstruction were given 50 cc. of 10 per cent NaCl subcutaneously daily. One lived 3 days, the other 4. The blood showed little change, except a marked terminal rise in chlorides. Animals given a like amount of distilled water or 25 per cent glucose showed the changes typical of untreated animals. The obstruction of the pylorus was released in six dogs 48 to 72 hours after the initial operation. Two died within 24 hours after the second operation with a high non-protein nitrogen in the blood. Two survived but showed a high level of non-protein nitrogen in the blood and a high nitrogen excretion in the urine, low blood chlorides, and a marked alkalosis. One dog in such a state died on the 13th day from peritonitis, arising in a wound infection. The other showed a marked fall in non-protein nitrogen in the blood following the administration of 10 gm. of sodium chloride by mouth, but died following the intravenous injection of 25 per cent sodium chloride. Two animals were given 50 cc. of 10 per cent NaCl subcutaneously, at the time of the second operation. The blood rapidly returned to normal and complete recovery followed. Two dogs with the duodenum obstructed by section and inversion of the cut ends were treated with 10 per cent sodium chloride after the obstruction had existed for 48 hours and the characteristic blood changes had developed. The non-protein nitrogen returned to normal within 48 hours after treatment was begun. One dog died following a lateral anastomosis for relief of the obstruction. A second operation was not attempted in the other animal. Two dogs in which the duodenum was obstructed by section and inversion of the cut ends were given 500 cc. of 0.85 per cent NaCl subcutaneously on the day of operation and each day thereafter until death. One dog lived 21 days, the other 28. Both dogs showed a marked alkalosis, but never any rise in the non-protein nitrogen of the blood. The animals at autopsy showed intussusception of the ileum with extensive ulceration. In one there was a perforation and terminal peritonitis. The operation wounds healed normally. Three dogs with section of the duodenum were given 500 cc. of distilled water every day. One died in 24 hours, one in 48 hours, and the third in 72 hours. Autopsy showed no cause for death other than toxemia. One dog with section of the duodenum was given 500 cc. of 2 per cent glucose every day. The blood showed a rapid rise in non-protein nitrogen and carbon dioxide-combining power, and a fall in chlorides. The animal died 72 hours after operation. Three dogs with section of the duodenum were given 500 cc. of 1 per cent sodium bicarbonate every day. One dog died in 72 hours, one lived 7 days, and the third lived 9 days. All developed a high non-protein nitrogen in the blood and two showed marked clinical symptoms of an alkalosis. These results demonstrate that solutions of sodium chloride have a marked effect in preventing and controlling the toxemia of pyloric and intestinal obstruction as shown in clinical symptoms and in chemical changes in the blood. Dogs given an abundant supply of distilled water died more quickly than untreated control animals. Solutions of glucose have no specific value, and sodium bicarbonate solutions prolong life only a short while. Good therapeutic results have been obtained with very concentrated sodium chloride solutions, and with dry sodium chloride given by mouth. It seems evident that sodium chloride has a specific action in preventing and possibly in controlling the changes produced by the toxic body. Sodium chloride is a valuable therapeutic agent in pyloric and high intestinal obstruction.
PMCID: PMC2128422  PMID: 19868771
3.  “Alas poor Yorick”: What retrospective analysis of canine skulls can tell us about the impact of environmental factors on health 
Necropsies and extensive histological evaluation for clinical and sub-clinical disease of approximately three hundred Portuguese Water dogs are available as part of an ongoing study to assess their state of health at end of life. Throughout life these dogs enjoyed a variety of lifestyles and environments. Here we carry out retrospective quantitative assessments of life-time dietary input and physical activity for each dog. To do this, collagens from skull vault bone and from dentine have been analyzed for ratios of stable isotopes to determine differences in diet that individual dogs experienced during late or early life respectively. Robustness of skull bone (weight/unit of skull size) was used as a relative indicator of the amount of physical activity experienced during a dog’s lifetime. These environmental parameters were correlated with the frequency and severity of specific disease processes determined at necropsy. Both measures were shown to exert significant low-level (r < 25%) differential effects on specific diseases. The value of retrospective analysis of environmental influences is discussed.
PMCID: PMC3891401  PMID: 24436781
Portuguese Water Dog; Necropsy; Histopathology; Exercise; Nutrition; Stable Isotope; Skull; Dentine; Collagen
4.  Comparison of the Relationship between Cerebral White Matter and Grey Matter in Normal Dogs and Dogs with Lateral Ventricular Enlargement 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(5):e0124174.
Large cerebral ventricles are a frequent finding in brains of dogs with brachycephalic skull conformation, in comparison with mesaticephalic dogs. It remains unclear whether oversized ventricles represent a normal variant or a pathological condition in brachycephalic dogs. There is a distinct relationship between white matter and grey matter in the cerebrum of all eutherian mammals. The aim of this study was to determine if this physiological proportion between white matter and grey matter of the forebrain still exists in brachycephalic dogs with oversized ventricles. The relative cerebral grey matter, white matter and cerebrospinal fluid volume in dogs were determined based on magnetic-resonance-imaging datasets using graphical software. In an analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) using body mass as the covariate, the adjusted means of the brain tissue volumes of two groups of dogs were compared. Group 1 included 37 mesaticephalic dogs of different sizes with no apparent changes in brain morphology, and subjectively normal ventricle size. Group 2 included 35 brachycephalic dogs in which subjectively enlarged cerebral ventricles were noted as an incidental finding in their magnetic-resonance-imaging examination. Whereas no significant different adjusted means of the grey matter could be determined, the group of brachycephalic dogs had significantly larger adjusted means of lateral cerebral ventricles and significantly less adjusted means of relative white matter volume. This indicates that brachycephalic dogs with subjective ventriculomegaly have less white matter, as expected based on their body weight and cerebral volume. Our study suggests that ventriculomegaly in brachycephalic dogs is not a normal variant of ventricular volume. Based on the changes in the relative proportion of WM and CSF volume, and the unchanged GM proportions in dogs with ventriculomegaly, we rather suggest that distension of the lateral ventricles might be the underlying cause of pressure related periventricular loss of white matter tissue, as occurs in internal hydrocephalus.
PMCID: PMC4418575  PMID: 25938575
5.  Myocarditis in dogs: etiology, clinical and histopathological features (11 cases: 2007–2013) 
Irish Veterinary Journal  2014;67(1):28.
Myocarditis is a disease caused by numerous etiological factors and characterized by a non-specific course. The only method allowing for precise characterization of inflammatory changes is the histopathological examination of heart muscle specimens. The study was conducted on heart muscle preparations from 11 dogs with ante-mortem diagnosis of cardiac disease. Animals presented with a poor response to an applied treatment or had suspected sudden cardiac death. The heart specimens were taken post-mortem, preserved and stained with haematoxylin and eosin. Subsequently, the presence and intensity of changes, i.e. inflammatory infiltration, the amount of connective tissue and features of cardiomyocyte degeneration were estimated. The specimens from dogs suspected of having a myocarditis of bacteriological etiology underwent additional bacteriological and immunohistochemical examination.
The examination revealed an inflammatory infiltration of variable intensity combined with the degenerative changes in all dogs. There were vegetative and abnormal cystic forms of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in 6 dogs. A Staphylococcus aureus infection was confirmed in one dog and an acute coronary syndrome with neutrophil infiltration was revealed in another one.
Although the clinical pattern in patients with myocarditis is diverse, the definitive morphological diagnosis is made based on the histopathological examination. This examination can lead to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of the disease. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first description of myocarditis combined with the presence of spore forms of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in the heart specimens of dogs.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13620-014-0028-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4311452  PMID: 25642323
Myocarditis; Heart; Borrelia burgdorferi; Dog
6.  On dogs, people, and a rabies epidemic: results from a sociocultural study in Bali, Indonesia 
Previously free of rabies, Bali experienced an outbreak in 2008, which has since caused a large number of human fatalities. In response, both mass dog culling and vaccination have been implemented. In order to assess potential community-driven interventions for optimizing rabies control, we conducted a study exploring the relationship between dogs, rabies, and the Balinese community. The objectives of this study were to: i) understand the human-dog relationship in Bali; ii) explore local knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAPs) relating to rabies; and iii) assess potential community-driven activities to optimize rabies control and surveillance.
Conducted between February and June 2011, the study combined a questionnaire (n = 300; CI = 95 %; error margin = 5 %) and focus group discussions (FGDs) in 10 villages in the Denpasar, Gianyar, and Karangasem regencies. The questionnaire included a Likert scale to assess community knowledge and attitudes. For the knowledge assessment, three points were given for a correct answer, while wrong answers and uncertain answers were given zero points. For the attitudes assessment, three points were given for a positive answer, two points for a neutral answer, and one point for a negative answer. Respondent knowledge was categorized as good (score >40), fair (score 20–40), or poor (score <20), based on a maximum total score 60. Respondent attitudes were categorized as positive (score >26), neutral (score 13–26), or negative (score <13), based on a maximum total score of 39. Mixed-gender FGDs in each sub-village (banjar) were conducted, each involving 7–15 participants to complement the questionnaire results. On a follow-up research trip in mid-2013, the data analysis was triangulated and validated using semi-structured interviews. Questionnaire data were analyzed descriptively using SPSS 17.0, while qualitative data from interviews and FGDs were analyzed manually according to accepted methods of coding and memo writing. The chi-square test was then used to analyze the statistical relationships between knowledge and attitudes of the respondents.
Out of the total 300 respondents, most were predominantly male (82 %), Hindu (99 %), married (96 %), older than 30 years of age (92 %), and owned dogs (72 %). Dog ownership was motivated by culture, personal taste, and function, with dogs was being used as guards (85 %) and companion animals (27 %), and was sometimes related to religious or traditional obligations (2 %). Relating to their culture and local beliefs, and eventually becoming their way of life, 79 % of respondents kept free-roaming dogs. With the rabies outbreak in Bali and Western breeds becoming more popular, more responsible dog ownership (leashing, confining, regular feeding) became more acceptable and changed community perceptions on keeping dogs, even though the sustainability of this practice cannot be gauged. In addition, the economic situation posed major problems in rural areas. The level of community knowledge about rabies and its associated control programs were generally fair and community attitudes were positive. However, community KAPs still need to be improved. A total of 74 % respondents reported to have vaccinated their dogs in 2011, but only few were found to report rabid animals to livestock officers (12 %) and a significant number believed that washing a bite wound was not important (62 %). Moreover, free-roaming dog practices and discarding of unwanted female puppies still continue and possibly create difficulties for rabies elimination as these practices potentially increase the stray dog population. We identified three major sociocultural aspects with potential for community-driven interventions to optimize current rabies elimination efforts: integrating local notions of ahimsa (non-violence) into education campaigns, engaging communities through the local banjar sociopolitical system, and working with traditional legal structures to increase local compliance with rabies control.
The human-dog relationship in Bali is multifaceted. Due to the uniqueness of the culture and the local beliefs, and encouraged by a socioeconomic aspect, a number of local practices were found to be constituting risk factors for continued rabies spread. Community knowledge and attitudes, which can consequently result in behavioral changes, needs to be improved across different genders, ages, educational backgrounds, and roles in the community, regardless of the individual village’s experiences with rabies. Furthermore, community-driven activities based on sociocultural conditioning and community capacity at the banjar and village levels, such as public awareness activities, vaccination, dog registration, dog population management, and rapid response to dog bites, were identified as being able to complement the rabies control program in Bali. The program also needs recognition or acknowledgement from governments, especially local government as well as regular mentoring to improve and sustain community participation.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s40249-015-0061-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4486702  PMID: 26137295
Bali; Rabies; Sociocultural; KAPs; Community-driven activities
A few findings which seem to be of importance may be pointed out:— Table I shows the analytical figures of serum-albumin, serum-globulin, and fibrin of the normal dog. The main difference between albumin and globulin appears in the relation of the precipitable to the non-precipitable total nitrogen and amino-nitrogen. Precipitable total nitrogen as well as amino-nitrogen is considerably larger in the albumin than in the globulin. In the cases of uranium nitrate nephritis (table II), the important figures approximate very closely those of normal serum-albumin. The samples from dog 3, that had been poisoned at the same time with phosphorous oil and uranium nitrate, show relatively large variations as compared with the figures from specimens from the other dogs, chiefly as regards the amino-nitrogen distribution: i. e., in dog 3, (1) the amount of amino-nitrogen to the total nitrogen in the solution before precipitation is higher; (2) the percentage of precipitable amino-nitrogen is larger; and (3) the ratio of precipitable amino-nitrogen to precipitable total nitrogen exceeds that of the other cases. All these changes, together with the fact that the total precipitable nitrogen did not undergo any quantitative variation, suggest that in the case of dog 3 the analyzed material contained a higher amount of lysin or cystin. It may further be mentioned that the analytical figures in this case differ also from those of the normal serum-albumin and still more from those of the serum-globulin. These changes, however, were not found in the case of dog 4, although this animal was treated in the same manner as the preceding dog. In the cases of nephritis in man (table III), striking differences were met with in the case of acute scarlet fever nephritis (No. 1a) and in the case (No. 2) of a patient with chronic nephritis and Pott's disease. This patient died a few weeks after the specimen for analysis was collected. The autopsy showed a general amyloidosis. The variations in both cases consist in a lowering of the ratio of amino-nitrogen to total nitrogen in the solution before precipitation, and corresponding to this, a fall of the same ratio in the filterable nitrogen. Such a change points to a relatively larger amount of prolin and oxyprolin or tryptophan in these cases. As a whole, one may conclude that Van Slyke's method, carefully applied and sufficiently controlled, may also be used for the study of urinary albumin. The results already obtained indicate that definite differences in the composition of urinary "albumin" may be detected. As yet it is premature to establish a definite relationship between the chemical composition of the "albumin" and the clinical or pathological conditions under which it appears, but it seems hopeful that further work may lead to the finding of such a relationship.
PMCID: PMC2124773  PMID: 19867474
8.  Post mortem computed tomography and core needle biopsy in comparison to autopsy in eleven bernese mountain dogs with histiocytic sarcoma 
BMC Veterinary Research  2015;11:229.
Bernese mountain dogs are reported to have a shorter life expectancy than other breeds. A major reason for this has been assigned to a high tumour prevalence, especially of histiocytic sarcoma. The efforts made by the breeding clubs to improve the longevity with the help of genetic tests and breeding value estimations are impeded by insufficiently reliable diagnoses regarding the cause of death. The current standard for post mortem examination in animals is performance of an autopsy. In human forensic medicine, imaging modalities, such as computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging, are used with increasing frequency as a complement to autopsy. The present study investigates, whether post mortem computed tomography in combination with core needle biopsy is able to provide a definitive diagnosis of histiocytic sarcoma. For this purpose we have analysed the results of post mortem computed tomography and core needle biopsy in eleven Bernese mountain dogs. In the subsequent autopsy, every dog had a definitive diagnosis of histiocytic sarcoma, based on immunohistochemistry.
Computed tomography revealed space-occupying lesions in all dogs. Lesion detection by post mortem computed tomography was similar to lesion detection in autopsy for lung tissue (9 cases in computed tomography / 8 cases in autopsy), thoracic lymph nodes (9/8), spleen (6/7), kidney (2/2) and bone (3/3). Hepatic nodules, however, were difficult to detect with our scanning protocol (2/7). Histology of the core needle biopsies provided definitive diagnoses of histiocytic sarcoma in ten dogs, including confirmation by immunohistochemistry in six dogs. The biopsy samples of the remaining dog did not contain any identifiable neoplastic cells. Autolysis was the main reason for uncertain histological diagnoses.
Post mortem computed tomography is a fast and effective method for the detection of lesions suspicious for histiocytic sarcoma in pulmonary, thoracic lymphatic, splenic, osseous and renal tissue. Optimization of the procedure regarding the scanning protocol and tissue sample size and number will improve the accuracy of the method.
PMCID: PMC4556196  PMID: 26329821
Post mortem computed tomography; Core needle biopsy; Bernese mountain dog; Histiocytic sarcoma; Autopsy
9.  Prenatal ultrasound and postmortem histologic evaluation of tooth germs: an observational, transversal study 
Head & Face Medicine  2015;11:18.
Hypodontia is the most frequent developmental anomaly of the orofacial complex, and its detection in prenatal ultrasound may indicate the presence of congenital malformations, genetic syndromes and chromosomal abnormalities.
To date, only a few studies have evaluated the histological relationship of human tooth germs identified by two-dimensional (2D) ultrasonography. In order to analyze whether two-dimensional ultrasonography of tooth germs may be successfully used for identifying genetic syndromes, prenatal ultrasound images of fetal tooth germs obtained from a Portuguese population sample were compared with histological images obtained from fetal autopsies.
Observational, descriptive, transversal study. The study protocol followed the ethical principles outlined by the Helsinki Declaration and was approved by the Ethics Committee of the School of Dental Medicine, University of Porto (FMDUP, Porto, Portugal) and of the Centro Hospitalar de Vila Nova de Gaia/Espinho (CHVNG/EPE, Porto, Portugal) as well as by the CGC Genetics Embryofetal Pathology Laboratory. Eighty-five fetuses examined by prenatal ultrasound screening from May 2011 to August 2012 had an indication for autopsy following spontaneous fetal death or medical termination of pregnancy. Of the 85 fetuses, 37 (43.5%) were randomly selected for tooth germ evaluation by routine histopathological analysis. Fetuses who were up to 30 weeks of gestation, and whose histological pieces were not representative of all maxillary tooth germs was excluded. Twenty four fetus between the 13th and 30th weeks of gestation fulfilled the parameters to autopsy.
Twenty four fetuses were submitted to histological evaluation and were determined the exact number, morphology, and mineralization of their tooth germs. All tooth germs were identifiable with ultrasonography as early as the 13th week of gestation. Of the fetuses autopsied, 41.7% had hypodontia (29.1% maxillary hypodontia and 20.9% mandibular hypodontia).
This results indicate that prenatal ultrasound is a reliable method for detecting of hypodontia an early gestational ages. Further studies with larger samples are needed to confirm these results.
PMCID: PMC4440249  PMID: 25962445
Tooth germ; Tooth buds; Ultrasound; Prenatal; Diagnosis; Histology
10.  Genetic regulation of canine skeletal traits: trade-offs between the hind limbs and forelimbs in the fox and dog 
Genetic variation in functionally integrated skeletal traits can be maintained over 10 million years despite bottlenecks and stringent selection. Here, we describe an analysis of the genetic architecture of the canid axial skeleton using populations of the Portuguese Water Dog Canis familiaris) and silver fox (Vulpes vulpes). Twenty-one skeletal metrics taken from radiographs of the forelimbs and hind limbs of the fox and dog were used to construct separate anatomical principal component (PC) matrices of the two species. In both species, 15 of the 21 PCs exhibited significant heritability, ranging from 25% to 70%. The second PC, in both species, represents a trade-off in which limb-bone width is inversely correlated with limb-bone length. PC2 accounts for approximately 15% of the observed skeletal variation, ~30% of the variation in shape. Many of the other significant PCs affect very small amounts of variation (e.g., 0.2–2%) along trade-off axes that partition function between the forelimbs and hind limbs. These PCs represent shape axes in which an increase in size of an element of the forelimb is associated with a decrease in size of an element of the hind limb and vice versa. In most cases, these trade-offs are heritable in both species and genetic loci have been identified in the Portuguese Water Dog for many of these. These PCs, present in both the dog and the fox, include ones that affect lengths of the forelimb versus the hind limb, length of the forefoot versus that of the hind foot, muscle moment (i.e., lever) arms of the forelimb versus hind limb, and cortical thickness of the bones of the forelimb versus hind limb. These inverse relationships suggest that genetic regulation of the axial skeleton results, in part, from the action of genes that influence suites of functionally integrated traits. Their presence in both dogs and foxes suggests that the genes controlling the regulation of these PCs of the forelimb versus hind limb may be found in other tetrapod taxa.
PMCID: PMC2367254  PMID: 18458753
11.  Genetic evaluation of Addison's disease in the Portuguese Water Dog 
Addison's disease, also known as hypoadrenocorticism, has been reported in many individual dogs, although some breeds exhibit a greater incidence than the population as a whole. Addison's is presumed to be an autoimmune mediated hereditary defect but the mode of inheritance remains unclear. In particular, the heritability and mode of inheritance have not been defined for the Portuguese Water Dog although Addison's is known to be prevalent in the breed.
The analyses present clear evidence that establishes Addison's disease as an inherited disorder in the Portuguese Water Dog with an estimate of heritability of 0.49 (± 0.16); there were no differences in risk for disease across sexes (p > 0.49). Further, the complex segregation analysis provides suggestive evidence that Addison's disease in the Portuguese Water Dog is inherited under the control of a single, autosomal recessive locus.
The high heritability and mode of inheritance of Addison's disease in the Portuguese Water Dog should enable the detection of segregating markers in a genome-wide scan and the identification of a locus linked to Addison's. Though the confirmation of Addison's disease as an autosomal recessive disorder must wait until the gene is identified, breeders of these dogs may wish to keep the present findings in mind as they plan their breeding programs to select against producing affected dogs.
PMCID: PMC1481556  PMID: 16670022
12.  Comparison of Microbiological, Histological, and Immunomodulatory Parameters in Response to Treatment with Either Combination Therapy with Prednisone and Metronidazole or Probiotic VSL#3 Strains in Dogs with Idiopathic Inflammatory Bowel Disease 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e94699.
Idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a common chronic enteropathy in dogs. There are no published studies regarding the use of probiotics in the treatment of canine IBD. The objectives were to compare responses to treatment with either combination therapy (prednisone and metronidazole) or probiotic strains (VSL#3) in dogs with IBD.
Methodology and Principal Findings
Twenty pet dogs with a diagnosis of IBD, ten healthy pet dogs, and archived control intestinal tissues from three euthanized dogs were used in this open label study. Dogs with IBD were randomized to receive either probiotic (D-VSL#3, n = 10) or combination drug therapy (D-CT, n = 10). Dogs were monitored for 60 days (during treatment) and re-evaluated 30 days after completing treatment. The CIBDAI (P<0.001), duodenal histology scores (P<0.001), and CD3+ cells decreased post-treatment in both treatment groups. FoxP3+ cells (p<0.002) increased in the D-VSL#3 group after treatment but not in the D-CT group. TGF-β+ cells increased in both groups after treatment (P = 0.0043) with the magnitude of this increase being significantly greater for dogs in the D-VSL#3 group compared to the D-CT group. Changes in apical junction complex molecules occludin and claudin-2 differed depending on treatment. Faecalibacterium and Turicibacter were significantly decreased in dogs with IBD at T0, with a significant increase in Faecalibacterium abundance observed in the animals treated with VSL#3 strains.
A protective effect of VSL#3 strains was observed in dogs with IBD, with a significant decrease in clinical and histological scores and a decrease in CD3+ T-cell infiltration. Protection was associated with an enhancement of regulatory T-cell markers (FoxP3+ and TGF-β+), specifically observed in the probiotic-treated group and not in animals receiving combination therapy. A normalization of dysbiosis after long-term therapy was observed in the probiotic group. Larger scale studies are warranted to evaluate the clinical efficacy of VSL#3 in canine IBD.
PMCID: PMC3983225  PMID: 24722235
Evidence is presented on the occurrence of spontaneous hypertension in dogs. All dogs with spontaneous hypertension exhibited normal renal plasma flow and glomerular filtration rate. Clearances on nephrogenic hypertensive dogs revealed that some exhibited normal kidney function, while others had significant depression of renal plasma flow and glomerular filtration rate. In the latter, the filtration fraction may or may not be elevated. Serial renal clearances were done at intervals on 3 dogs with spontaneous hypertension during their 3rd year of known hypertension. They exhibited no tendency to develop impaired renal function in the face of prolonged benign hypertension. Serial renal clearances on nephrogenic hypertensive dogs revealed no tendency for kidney function to become progressively impaired. This was true, whether the immediate postoperative clearance values were normal or depressed. It was also true regardless of the duration of the hypertension. It is suggested that mechanisms other than elevated blood pressure per se operate to produce progressive kidney damage and impairment of renal function. No tendency was revealed over the course of a year or more for the kidney function to improve in Goldblatt dogs exhibiting depressed clearances immediately postoperatively. This is interpreted as evidence against the postoperative development in persistently hypertensive Goldblatt dogs of a renal collateral circulation sufficient to augment significantly effective renal blood flow. Pathological studies on 2 dogs with spontaneous hypertension revealed slight to moderate chronic focal lesions in the kidneys, and bilateral adrenal cortical adenomatous hyperplasia. Both lesions may have no pathogenetic significance. In accord with previous observations, autopsies on 3 Goldblatt dogs revealed minimal renal changes in one, and unilateral kidney atrophy with contralateral hypertrophy in the 2 others. The adrenals were normal. In general, data on renal clearances showed correlation with postmortem kidney findings. However, normal renal clearances are found in the presence of anatomically abnormal kidneys. The findings in canine spontaneous and nephrogenic hypertension are compared and contrasted with data obtained in human essential hypertension. Pathogenetic relationships are discussed.
PMCID: PMC2135930  PMID: 15394070
14.  Pathogenesis of natural and experimental Pseudorabies virus infections in dogs 
Virology Journal  2015;12:44.
Since late 2011, cases of suspected canine pseudorabies have increased in north China with the outbreak of swine pseudorabies in the same area, but the pathogenesis of canine Pseudorabies virus (PRV) infections in China is poorly understood. In this study, we investigated the pathogenesis of canine pseudorabies.
The pathological changes in 13 dogs that died of natural PRV infections (confirmed by pathogen detection) during 2011–2013 in Beijing were evaluated. An experimental study was also conducted in which healthy adult beagle dogs were administered PRV isolate BJ-YT by subcutaneous injection. The dog tissues were subjected to gross and microscopic examinations and immunohistochemical analysis and the dogs’ serum cardiac troponin-I (cTn-I) was measured.
Systemic hemorrhage and/or congestion were the most marked pathological changes in both the naturally and experimentally PRV-infected dogs. Macroscopically, the major lesions consisted of petechiae and ecchymoses in both the endocardium and epicardium, thrombi in the mitral valves, hemorrhage in the lungs and thymus, and incomplete contraction of the spleen. Microscopically, the major histopathological findings were systemic hemorrhage and congestion, nonsuppurative ganglioneuritis (in the experimentally infected dogs, unexamined in the naturally PRV-infected dogs), brainstem encephalitis (in the naturally infected dogs), necrosis or exudation in the myocardium, and lymphoid depletion in many lymphoid organs and tissues. Viral antigens were only detected in the brainstems and peripheral ganglia of the infected dogs. Serum cTn-I was significantly higher in the experimentally PRV-infected dogs with myocardial lesions than in the dogs without myocardial lesions.
Based on these results, we conclude that virally induced systemic hemorrhage, peripheral nervous system pathology, and/or cardiac injury can individually or collectively cause death in PRV-infected dogs. The respiratory signs of the disease are attributed to cardiogenic lesions.
PMCID: PMC4374540  PMID: 25889104
Canine; Pseudorabies virus; Pathogenesis; Cardiac injury; Hemorrhage; Ganglioneuritis
15.  Ten inherited disorders in purebred dogs by functional breed groupings 
Analysis of 88,635 dogs seen at the University of California, Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital from 1995 to 2010 identified ten inherited conditions having greater prevalence within the purebred dog population as compared to the mixed-breed dog population: aortic stenosis, atopy/allergic dermatitis, gastric dilatation volvulus (GDV), early onset cataracts, dilated cardiomyopathy, elbow dysplasia, epilepsy, hypothyroidism, intervertebral disk disease (IVDD), and hepatic portosystemic shunt. The objective of the present study was to ascertain if disorders with higher prevalence in purebreds were restricted to particular breed group classifications within the purebred population, specifically the American Kennel Club breed grouping or groups with genomic similarities based upon allele sharing. For each disorder, healthy controls seen at the hospital during that same time period were matched for age, weight, and sex to each affected dog to determine risk of disease presentation in the purebred group as compared to that of the mixed-breed population. To enhance reliability of the analyses, sampling of matched healthy to affected dogs was repeated 50 times. For each comparison, the purebred subgroups to mixed-breed odds ratio was determined as was the mean P value used to test this ratio.
For aortic stenosis, GDV, early onset cataracts, dilated cardiomyopathy, elbow dysplasia, epilepsy, and portosystemic shunt, most purebred groups were not statistically distinct from the mixed-breed population with higher prevalence in purebreds restricted to distinct subsets of purebred dogs. The conditions of atopy/allergic dermatitis, hypothyroidism, and IVDD were more pervasive across the purebred population with many groups having higher prevalence than the mixed-breed population. The prevalence of IVDD in purebred terrier groups was statistically lower than that observed for mixed-breed dogs.
The results offer an assessment of the distribution of inherited disorders within purebred dogs and illustrate how mixed-breed and subpopulations of purebred dogs do not differ statistically in prevalence for certain disorders. Some disorders appear linked to common ancestors providing insight into disease allele origin whereas others may be due to selection for common structural morphology. Knowledge of the origin of a condition may aid in reducing its prevalence in the dog population as a whole.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s40575-015-0021-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4579393  PMID: 26401337
Purebred dog; Mixed-breed dog; Inherited disorders; Allele sharing
16.  The transcriptomic profile of peripheral blood nuclear cells in dogs with heart failure 
BMC Genomics  2014;15(1):509.
In recent years advances have been made in the investigative methods of molecular background of canine heart disease. Studies have been conducted to identify specific genes which, when pathologically expressed, could lead to the dysfunction of the canine heart or are correlated with heart failure. For this purpose genome wide microarray experiments on tissues from failing hearts have been performed. In the presented study a whole genome microarray analysis was used for the first time to describe the transcription profile of peripheral blood nuclear cells in dogs with heart failure. Dogs with recognized heart disease were classified according the ISACHC (International Small Animal Cardiac Health Council) classification scheme as class 1 (asymptomatic) - 13 dogs, class 2 (mild to moderate heart failure) - 13 dogs and class 3 (severe heart failure) - 12 dogs. The control group consisted of 14 healthy dogs. The clinical picture of the animals included: animal history, clinical examination, echocardiographic examination and where applicable electrocardiographic and radiographic examinations.
In the present study we identified four sets of differentially expressed genes, namely heart-failure-specific genes and ISACHC1-specific genes, ISACHC2-sepcific genes and ISACHC-3 specific genes. The most important set consisted of genes differentially expressed in all dogs with heart failure, despite the ISACHC stage. We identified 71 heart-failure-specific genes which were involved in two statistically significant receptor signalling pathways, namely angiotensinR - > CREB/ELK-SRF/TP53 signalling and ephrinR - > actin signalling. The number of ISACHC1-specific genes was 83; ISACHC2-specific genes - 1247 and ISACHC3-specific - 200.
The transcriptomic profile of peripheral blood nuclear cells in dogs with heart failure seems to reflect the presence of clinical signs of the disease in patients based on the observation that the largest number of differentially expressed genes was identified in ISACHC 2 group of patients. This group consists of dogs just starting to show clinical signs of heart failure. A set of genes was also found to have changed expression in all dogs with heart failure, despite the stage of the disease.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/1471-2164-15-509) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4092214  PMID: 24952741
Dogs; Heart failure; ISACHC; Transcriptomic profile; Microarrays
17.  Bartonella vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii and Related Members of the Alpha Subdivision of the Proteobacteria in Dogs with Cardiac Arrhythmias, Endocarditis, or Myocarditis 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1999;37(11):3618-3626.
Cardiac arrhythmias, endocarditis, or myocarditis was identified in 12 dogs, of which 11 were seroreactive to Bartonella vinsonii subspecies berkhoffii antigens. Historical abnormalities were highly variable but frequently included substantial weight loss, syncope, collapse, or sudden death. Fever was an infrequently detected abnormality. Cardiac disease was diagnosed following an illness of short duration in most dogs, but a protracted illness of at least 6 months' duration was reported for four dogs. Valvular endocarditis was diagnosed echocardiographically or histologically in eight dogs, two of which also had moderate to severe multifocal myocarditis. Four dogs lacking definitive evidence of endocarditis were included because of seroreactivity to B. vinsonii antigens and uncharacterized heart murmurs and/or arrhythmias. Alpha proteobacteria were not isolated from the blood by either conventional or lysis centrifugation blood culture techniques. Using PCR amplification and DNA sequencing of a portion of the 16S rRNA gene, B. vinsonii was identified in the blood or heart valves of three dogs. DNA sequence alignment of PCR amplicons derived from blood or tissue samples from seven dogs clustered among members of the alpha subdivision of the Proteobacteria and suggested the possibility of involvement of one or more alpha proteobacteria; however, because of the limited quantity of sequence, the genus could not be identified. Serologic or molecular evidence of coinfection with tick-transmitted pathogens, including Ehrlichia canis, Babesia canis, Babesia gibsonii, or spotted fever group rickettsiae, was obtained for seven dogs. We conclude that B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii and closely related species of alpha proteobacteria are an important, previously unrecognized cause of arrhythmias, endocarditis, myocarditis, syncope, and sudden death in dogs.
PMCID: PMC85709  PMID: 10523564
18.  The importance of histologic parameters of lacteal involvement in cases of canine lymphoplasmacytic enteritis  
Background: The most frequent form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in dogs is represented histologically, by lymphoplasmacytic enteritis (LPE), a histological category, often associated with other morphologic alterations including lymphangiectasia (LE). However, literature data on this latter topic are quite scarce and have mostly been obtained in single reports or in small series.
Aim: We evaluated some morphologic parameters of intestinal villi and lacteals in a large cohort of dogs, and correlated them with serum albumin and cholesterol values.
Patients and methods: We investigated 136 dogs (94 with LPE, and 42 with gastrointestinal problems different from IBD) and analyzed their clinical, laboratory (albumin and cholesterol values), endoscopic, and histologic variables.
Results: The LPE group showed significantly impaired clinical, laboratory, endoscopic, and histologic variables compared to controls. Affected dogs showed significant correlations between canine inflammatory bowel disease activity index (CIBDAI) scores and endoscopic and histologic variables. Moreover, the grade of hematologic changes were strongly related to the intestinal histologic variables, in particular those concerning villous and lacteals morphology.
Conclusion: Dogs with LPE had intestinal histologic abnormalities (height, width, height/width ratio, calculated for both villi and lacteals), whose degree correlated with the severity of hypoalbuminemia and hypocholesterolemia. Evaluation of endoscopic and histologic variables in association to the clinical findings may reveal useful insights for the pathogenesis of LPE and, hopefully, might lead to more targeted therapeutic approaches.
PMCID: PMC4285930  PMID: 25584174
Dogs; Histology; Intestine; Lymphangiectasia; Lymphoplasmacytic enteritis
19.  Regulation of Cholesterol Metabolism in the Dog 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1973;52(9):2368-2378.
In six adult pedigreed dogs the effects of high-cholesterol diets or bile diversion on the sizes of body cholesterol pools were studied at autopsy. Total body cholesterol was determined by measuring the cholesterol content of discrete organs and of the eviscerated carcass: neither cholesterol feeding nor bile diversion had altered total body cholesterol or the cholesterol content of individual organs and tissues. These results validated the conclusion based on sterol balance data obtained during life, that high-cholesterol feeding did not lead to substantial expansion of tissue cholesterol pools.
The total amount of exchangeable cholesterol in the animals with an intact enterohepatic circulation, when estimated from isotopic data, was essentially the same as that measured chemically: this indicated that there was little or no nonexchangeable cholesterol in these dogs, except in skin and nervous tissue, regardless of the cholesterol content of the diet. This correspondence of estimates was not obtained in the bile-diverted dogs: we propose that the defect in the isotopic estimates was due to the accelerated rate of cholesterol synthesis in these animals.
Gross and microscopic morphology of all organs and tissues was examined. Abnormal findings were limited to the biliary tract and the urinary collecting system of the two bile-diverted dogs: multiple bilirubinate gallstones were found, and mild pyelitis and ureteritis were present on the side of the bilio-renal shunt, but the urinary bladder was normal. Histologic evidence of moderate degree of cholangitis was found in one of the two bile-shunted dogs, but in neither dog was there evidence of impedance of bile flow.
PMCID: PMC333041  PMID: 4727465
20.  Effects of Coronary Artery Reperfusion on Myocardial Infarct Size Calculated from Creatine Kinase 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1978;61(4):1048-1056.
The effects of coronary artery reperfusion at 1 and 3 h after occlusion on infarct size (IS) in the conscious dog were compared with a second group of dogs that were not reperfused (24 h occlusion). Infarct size was calculated from creatine kinase (CK) appearing in blood samples (ISs) and myocardial CK depletion (ISm), and determined from gross and histological inspection of the pathological tissue (ISp). Under both conditions, ISm correlated well with ISp. In dogs with 24-h coronary occlusions, ISs correlated well with ISm (ISs = 14.26 + 1.18 × ISm, r = 0.92). In reperfused dogs, the relationship remained linear but was altered (ISs = 15.33 + 2.07 × ISm, r = 0.89). The slope was significantly greater, P <0.05, than that observed for dogs that were not reperfused, suggesting that more CK appeared in serum per gram of infarct. Similarly, significantly different relationships were observed in the reperfused and nonreperfused dogs, when ISs was compared with ISp. Moreover, the configuration of the serial blood CK curve was changed significantly by reperfusion. In dogs with a 24-h occlusion, CK rose gradually to a peak at 11.4±0.5 h. In dogs reperfused at 3 h, CK rose sharply at 3 h and reached a peak at 6.8±0.5 h, significantly earlier (P <0.01) than occurred in dogs reperfused at 1 h, i.e., when the peak occurred at 4.2±0.4 h. The rapid appearance of CK in blood after reperfusion at 1 and 3 h suggested a washout phenomena. Thus, reperfusion alters the shape of the serial blood CK curve and results in a different linear relationship between calculated and measured infarct size, resulting in greater recovery of CK in blood per unit of infarcted myocardium.
PMCID: PMC372622  PMID: 659577
21.  The effects of the Ilizarov distraction technique on bone and muscle in a canine model: a preliminary report. 
This study examined the functional and morphological changes experienced by bone and muscle during Ilizarov distraction osteogenesis. Although extensive research has been conducted in the area of regenerate bone formation, the effect of limb lengthening on the biomechanical properties of bone and muscle has not been thoroughly addressed. In this study, an Ilizarov external fixator was applied to one tibia of nine skeletally mature dogs, and distracted 3 cm over thirty days. The contralateral tibia served as control. Histology and weekly radiographs assessed muscle morphology and bone growth. The contractile capabilities of the gastrocnemius muscles from the experimental and control limbs were measured prior to sacrifice, and the bending stiffness of the tibias of five dogs was determined. All dogs experienced loss of knee extension secondary to muscle contracture and/or stiffness about the joint. These dogs did not bear weight on the experimental limb. In one dog, spontaneous resolution of the muscle contracture allowed partial weight bearing during the last three weeks of consolidation. Despite 3 cm distraction, tibial lengthening ranged from 1.7 to 3 cm. Biomechanical testing revealed a significant reduction in the bending stiffness of the lengthened bones when compared with control values (p < 0.003). The weight of the lengthened muscles was 35% less than control values, a finding consistent with the histology which showed mild muscle fiber degeneration in all dogs. The contractile capabilities of the lengthened muscles were reduced to 29-80% of control values (p < 0.005). In contrast, the lengthened muscle from the weight bearing dog retained 85% of the weight and 104% of the maximum contractile force of the control muscle.
PMCID: PMC2378139  PMID: 9129270
22.  Quantitative T2 relaxation time and magnetic transfer ratio predict endplate biochemical content of intervertebral disc degeneration in a canine model 
Direct measurement of disc biochemical content is impossible in vivo. Therefore, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is used to evaluate disc health. Unfortunately, current clinical imaging techniques do not adequately assess degeneration, especially in the early stage of cartilage endplate, and subchondral bone zone (CEPZ). Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the sensitivity of quantitative MRI methods, namely T2 relaxation time and Magnetic Transfer Ratio (MTR), to identify early disc degeneration, especially for the CEPZ, using an experimental canine model of intervertebral disc injury and to investigate their sensitivity in depicting biochemically and histologically controlled degenerative changes in the disc.
Sixteen juvenile dogs underwent iatrogenic annular disruption via stab incisions. The animals underwent repeated 3.0 T MR imaging, and were sacrificed 4, 8, and 12 weeks post-operatively. A continuous rectangle drawing method was used to select regions of interest for the intervertebral disc from the cephalic to caudal CEPZ including the vertebrae, nucleus pulposus (NP) and annulus fibrosus (AF), which resembled pixel measurement for imaging analysis. Presence of degenerative changes was controlled by biochemical and histological analyses. The correlations between histological score, biochemical content, and quantitative MRI signal intensities were also analyzed.
Both T2 relaxation time and MTR values changed for CEPZ, NP, and AF tissues within 12 weeks. T2 relaxation time values decreased significantly in the NP, AF, and CEPZ separately at pre-operation, 4, 8, and 12 weeks when compared each time (P < 0.05). MTR values showed no significant differences for the CEPZ between 8 and 4 weeks or 12 weeks, or compared to pre-operative values; there were significant differences for the AF. Biochemical and histological analysis showed changes consistent with quantitative MRI signal intensities for early stage degeneration.
Early traumatic or degenerative changes are detectable with both T2 and MTR. T2 changes were more sensitive to the differences in disc status, especially for the CEPZ. Since T2 and MTR reflect different disc properties, performing both imaging under the same conditions would be helpful in the evaluation of disc degeneration. The continuous rectangle drawing can be a sensitive method to detect the changes of CEPZ.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12891-015-0610-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4485356  PMID: 26123048
Intervertebral disc degeneration; Magnetic resonance imaging; T2 relaxation time; Magnetic transfer ratio; Cartilage endplate
23.  Dogs with separation-related problems show a “less pessimistic” cognitive bias during treatment with fluoxetine (Reconcile™) and a behaviour modification plan 
Canine separation-related problems (SRP) (also described as “separation anxiety” or “separation distress”) are among the most common behavioural complaints of dog owners. Treatment with psychoactive medication in parallel with a behaviour modification plan is well documented in the literature, but it is unknown if this is associated with an improvement in underlying affective state (emotion and mood) or simply an inhibition of the behaviour. Cognitive judgement bias tasks have been proposed as a method for assessing underlying affective state and so we used this approach to identify if any change in clinical signs during treatment was associated with a consistent change in cognitive bias (affective state).
Five dogs showing signs of SRP (vocalising – e.g. barking, howling-, destruction of property, and toileting – urination or defecation- when alone) were treated with fluoxetine chewable tablets (Reconcile™) and set on a standard behaviour modification plan for two months. Questionnaires and interviews of the owners were used to monitor the clinical progress of the dogs. Subjects were also evaluated using a spatial cognitive bias test to infer changes in underlying affect prior to, and during, treatment. Concurrently, seven other dogs without signs of SRP were tested in the same way to act as controls. Furthermore, possible correlations between cognitive bias and clinical measures were also assessed for dogs with SRP.
Prior to treatment, the dogs with SRP responded to ambiguous positions in the cognitive bias test negatively (i.e. with slower running speeds) compared to control dogs (p < 0.05). On weeks 2 and 6 of treatment, SRP dogs displayed similar responses in the cognitive bias test to control dogs, consistent with the possible normalization of affect during treatment, with this effect more pronounced at week 6 (p > 0.05). Questionnaire based clinical measures were significantly correlated among themselves and with performance in the cognitive bias test.
These results demonstrate for the first time that the clinical treatment of a negative affective state and associated behaviours in a non-human species can produce a shift in cognitive bias. These findings demonstrate how the outcome of an intervention on a clinical problem can be evaluated to determine not only that the subject’s behaviour has improved, but also its psychological state (welfare)
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12917-015-0373-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4393593  PMID: 25889323
24.  Prevalence and varieties of Helicobacter species in dogs from random sources and pet dogs: animal and public health implications. 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1996;34(12):3165-3170.
Gastric bacteria of a variety of ultrastructural morphologies have been identified in or isolated from domestic carnivores, but their prevalence in different populations of animals and their clinical significance are still unknown. The purposes of this study were (i) to evaluate the prevalence and morphologic types of gastric bacterial in three different populations of dogs; (ii) to determine which of the organisms were culturable, and if the cultured organisms were morphologically similar to the organisms seen in situ; (iii) to identify the isolated organisms; and (iv) to determine if gastric bacteria were associated with gastritis. Three groups of dogs were examined: healthy laboratory dogs, healthy dogs from an animal shelter, and pet dogs with various nongastric illnesses. Of these, 100% of laboratory and shelter dogs and 67% of pet dogs were colonized by large, tightly coiled gastric spiral bacteria morphologically similar to Gastrospirillum hominis or Helicobacter felis (referred to as gastrospirilla). Regardless of the presence or density of gastric bacteria, all of the dogs in the study except one had mild to moderate gastritis. Helicobacter spp. were isolated from only 6 of 39 stomachs cultured, and only three of the organisms isolated were morphologically similar to the bacteria seen in situ. Five helicobacters were identified by 16S rDNA (genes coding for rRNA) sequence analysis. Three were strains of H. felis, one was H. bilis, and one was a novel helicobacter morphologically similar to "Flexispira rappini." Gastrospirilla are almost universal in the stomachs of domestic dogs, and in most infected dogs, they do not appear to be associated with clinical signs or histologic lesions compared with uninfected dogs. Nongastrospirillum helicobacters are rare in dogs and are not histologically detectable. Helicobacter pylori was not isolated from domestic dogs.
PMCID: PMC229476  PMID: 8940465
25.  Interspecific and Geographic Variation in the Diets of Sympatric Carnivores: Dingoes/Wild Dogs and Red Foxes in South-Eastern Australia 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(3):e0120975.
Dingoes/wild dogs (Canis dingo/familiaris) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are widespread carnivores in southern Australia and are controlled to reduce predation on domestic livestock and native fauna. We used the occurrence of food items in 5875 dingo/wild dog scats and 11,569 fox scats to evaluate interspecific and geographic differences in the diets of these species within nine regions of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. The nine regions encompass a wide variety of ecosystems. Diet overlap between dingoes/wild dogs and foxes varied among regions, from low to near complete overlap. The diet of foxes was broader than dingoes/wild dogs in all but three regions, with the former usually containing more insects, reptiles and plant material. By contrast, dingoes/wild dogs more regularly consumed larger mammals, supporting the hypothesis that niche partitioning occurs on the basis of mammalian prey size. The key mammalian food items for dingoes/wild dogs across all regions were black wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), brushtail possum species (Trichosurus spp.), common wombat (Vombatus ursinus), sambar deer (Rusa unicolor), cattle (Bos taurus) and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). The key mammalian food items for foxes across all regions were European rabbit, sheep (Ovis aries) and house mouse (Mus musculus). Foxes consumed 6.1 times the number of individuals of threatened Critical Weight Range native mammal species than did dingoes/wild dogs. The occurrence of intraguild predation was asymmetrical; dingoes/wild dogs consumed greater biomass of the smaller fox. The substantial geographic variation in diet indicates that dingoes/wild dogs and foxes alter their diet in accordance with changing food availability. We provide checklists of taxa recorded in the diets of dingoes/wild dogs and foxes as a resource for managers and researchers wishing to understand the potential impacts of policy and management decisions on dingoes/wild dogs, foxes and the food resources they interact with.
PMCID: PMC4366095  PMID: 25790230

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