Animals2015, 5(2), 442-454; doi:10.3390/ani5020365 - published 16 June 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: There is a growing interest in the use of nutraceuticals for weight management in companion animals. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of mannoheptulose (MH), a sugar in avocados that inhibits glycolysis, on energy metabolism in adult Beagle dogs. The study was a double-blind, randomized controlled trial where dogs were allocated to a control (CON, n = 10, 10.1 ± 0.4 kg) or MH containing diet (168 mg/kg, n = 10, 10.3 ± 0.4 kg). Blood was collected after an overnight fast and 1 h post-feeding (week 12) to determine serum satiety related hormones and biochemistry. Resting and post-prandial energy expenditure and respiratory quotient were determined by indirect calorimetry (weeks 4 and 8). Physical activity was measured using an accelerometer (weeks 3, 7, 11). Body composition was assessed using dual X-ray absorptiometry (week 12). MH significantly (p < 0.05) increased fasting serum glucagon-like peptide-1 and post-prandial serum ghrelin. MH tended (p < 0.1) to increase fasting serum gastric inhibitory peptide and decrease physical activity. Together, these findings suggest that dietary MH has the ability to promote satiation and lowers daily energy expenditure.
Animals2015, 5(2), 426-441; doi:10.3390/ani5020364 - published 12 June 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Millions of pets are abandoned worldwide every year, which is an important animal welfare and financial problem. This paper was divided into three studies. Our first two studies were designed as a national survey of animal shelters to profile the population of stray dogs and cats, as well as to gather information on both relinquishment and adoption. The aim of our third study was to test the impact of identification on the recovery of dogs entering animal shelters. Studies one and two indicate that more than 100,000 dogs and more than 30,000 cats enter animal shelters annually in Spain. We observed a seasonal effect in the number of admissions in cats. Two-thirds of dogs and cats entering shelters were found as strays, while the rest were relinquished directly to the shelter. Most pets admitted to animal shelters were adult, non-purebred, and without a microchip, with the majority of dogs being medium sized. Adult dogs spent significantly more time in shelters than puppies. While most animals were either adopted or recovered by their owner, a considerable percentage remained at the shelter or was euthanized. The identification of dogs with a microchip increased by 3-fold the likelihood of them being returned to the owner.
Animals2015, 5(2), 407-425; doi:10.3390/ani5020363 - published 4 June 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Transportation is a complex stressor made up of factors including weaning itself and withdrawal from feed and water. Therefore, transportation has the potential to negatively impact the health and welfare of weaned pigs. Pigs were transported for 32 h and measures of performance, physiology, and behavior were taken to assess piglet welfare. Treatment groups included pigs not weaned or transported (CON), weaned pigs provided with feed and water (WEAN+), weaned pigs not provided with feed and water (WEAN−), weaned and transported pigs provided with feed and water (TRANS+), and weaned and transported pigs not provided with feed and water (TRANS−). Body weight loss was different among treatments (p < 0.01). CON pigs had a 6.5% ± 0.45% gain in body weight after 32 h. WEAN+, WEAN−, TRANS+, and TRANS− groups all had a loss in body weight of 5.9% ± 0.45%, 7.8% ± 0.45%, 6.5% ± 0.45% and 9.1% ± 0.46%, respectively. The N:L was greater in all weaned pigs at 8 h compared to CON pigs (p < 0.01). WEAN− and transported pigs had significantly higher N:L than CON pigs from 8 h through 16 h, however, all treatment groups were similar to CON pigs after 16 h irrespective of provision of feed and water. Blood glucose levels were lower in transported and/or weaned pigs than CON pigs after 16 h irrespective of the provision of feed and water. TRANS+ females had higher creatine kinase (CK) levels than males (p < 0.05). After a 16 h transport period, TRANS− pigs had higher total plasma protein (TP) levels than all other treatment groups (p < 0.05). Significant changes in behavior were observed during and after transportation, which could also be indicative of stress. Overall, transportation and weaning had a negative effect on performance, physiology and behavior (both during and post-weaning) of pigs, especially when feed and water was not provided. Transporting pigs without feed and water for more than 24 h was a welfare concern as indicated by changes in body weight and physiology measures of stress.
Animals2015, 5(2), 395-406; doi:10.3390/ani5020362 - published 29 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The need for undergraduate teaching of Animal Welfare and Ethics (AWE) in Australian and New Zealand veterinary courses reflects increasing community concerns and expectations about AWE; global pressures regarding food security and sustainability; the demands of veterinary accreditation; and fears that, unless students encounter AWE as part of their formal education, as veterinarians they will be relatively unaware of the discipline of animal welfare science. To address this need we are developing online resources to ensure Australian and New Zealand veterinary graduates have the knowledge, and the research, communication and critical reasoning skills, to fulfill the AWE role demanded of them by contemporary society. To prioritize development of these resources we assembled leaders in the field of AWE education from the eight veterinary schools in Australia and New Zealand and used modified deliberative polling. This paper describes the role of the poll in developing the first shared online curriculum resource for veterinary undergraduate learning and teaching in AWE in Australia and New Zealand. The learning and teaching strategies that ranked highest in the exercise were: scenario-based learning; a quality of animal life assessment tool; the so-called ‘Human Continuum’ discussion platform; and a negotiated curriculum.
Animals2015, 5(2), 361-394; doi:10.3390/ani5020361 - published 21 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The objective of this review is to point out that the global dialog on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in animal agriculture has, thus far, not adequately considered animal welfare in proposed climate change mitigation strategies. Many suggested approaches for reducing emissions, most of which could generally be described as calls for the intensification of production, can have substantial effects on the animals. Given the growing world-wide awareness and concern for animal welfare, many of these approaches are not socially sustainable. This review identifies the main emission abatement strategies in the climate change literature that would negatively affect animal welfare and details the associated problems. Alternative strategies are also identified as possible solutions for animal welfare and climate change, and it is suggested that more attention be focused on these types of options when allocating resources, researching mitigation strategies, and making policy decisions on reducing emissions from animal agriculture.
Animals2015, 5(2), 349-360; doi:10.3390/ani5020349 - published 13 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the viability and growth rate of piglets after weaning, the content of lipids in the blood and liver, antioxidant activity (AOA) and lipid peroxidation (LPO) when various additives are used in feed. The experiments were performed on two crosses of piglets obtained from Large White breed sows and Landrace breed boars. Twenty to 28 animals were randomly assigned per group. The following additives were tested: the benzodiazepine phenazepam, the neuroleptic aminazine, vitamins E and C, and the extract Eleutherococcus senticosus (Araliaceae). Different doses and combinations of the additives against ultraviolet irradiation were used. The addition of these substances improved the growth rate and viability of piglets. AOA increased under the influence of all factors studied, especially with the addition of extract of Eleutherococcus in feed in combination with aminazine and UV-irradiation (p < 0.01). However, the addition of Eleutherococcus extract and aminazine intensified LPO (p < 0.01), but use of UV irradiation helped to decrease LPO values (p < 0.01). Feeding a mixture of additives per pig per day of 3 mL of Eleutherococcus extract, 80 mg of 25% tocopherol, and 500 mg of ascorbic acid increased survival rate, average daily gain, and live weight at the end of the experiment. Thus, the use of prophylactic antistress and sedative drugs during weaning helps AOA normalize LPO of red blood cells; enhance post weaning growth of the pigs by 4.8% to 24.6% and increases piglet survival rate by 5% to 5.1%.