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Non-dietary risk factors for gastric dilatation/volvulus
Gastric volvulus still is one of the most common reason for (sudden) death of large and giant breeds. Many owners of dogs on risk ask for preventive strategies. As this study demonstrates, there are some easy but effective things to do: for example, avoid raised feeding bowls!

Ths objective of this study was to identify non-dietary risk factors for gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) in large breed and giant breed dogs. It was designed as a prospective cohort study.

1,637 dogs > or = 6 months old of the following breeds were included: Akita, Bloodhound, Collie, Great Dane, Irish Setter, Irish Wolfhound, Newfoundland, Rottweiler, Saint Bernard, Standard Poodle, and Weimaraner.

Owners of dogs that did not have a history of GDV were recruited at dog shows, and the dog`s length and height and the depth and width of its thorax and abdomen were measured. Information concerning the dog`s medical history, genetic background, personality, and diet was obtained from the owners, and owners were contacted by mail and telephone at approximately 1-year intervals to determine whether dogs had developed GDV or died.

Incidence of GDV, calculated on the basis of dog-years at risk for dogs that were or were not exposed to potential risk factors, was used to calculate the relative risk of GDV.

Cumulative incidence of GDV during the study was 6% for large breed and giant breed dogs. Factors significantly associated with an increased risk of GDV were increasing age, having a first-degree relative with a history of GDV, having a faster speed of eating, and having a raised feeding bowl.

Approximately 20 and 52% of cases of GDV among the large breed and giant breed dogs, respectively, were attributed to having a raised feed bowl.

Source: Glickman LT, Glickman NW, Schellenberg DB, Raghavan M, Lee T. (2000): Non-dietary risk factors for gastric dilatation-volvulus in large and giant breed dogs. In: J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2000 Nov 15;217(10):1492-9.



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SMALL ANIMAL PRACTICE

Reference intervals for blood parameters in Shetland Sheepdogsmembers
Several breeds have physiological peculiarities that induce variations in reference intervals (RIs) compared with the general canine population. Shetland sheepdogs (SSs) are reported to be more predisposed to different diseases (eg, hyperlipidemia, gallbladder mucocele, and hypothyroidism). Consequently, a breed‐specific approach is more often required. Thus, the aim of this study was to determine whether the RIs of the general canine population could be applied to that of SSs, and to generate breed‐specific RIs, where appropriate.

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