Send to

Choose Destination
Vet Surg. 2008 Jan;37(1):102-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-950X.2007.00354.x.

The effects of lifetime food restriction on the development of osteoarthritis in the canine shoulder.

Author information

Department of Clinical Studies, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6010, USA.



To report effects of age and lifetime food restriction on development and progression of shoulder joint osteoarthritis (OA) in Labrador retriever dogs.


Longitudinal life-span, cohort study.


Labrador retriever dogs (n=48).


Littermates were paired (gender, weight) to make 24 pairs of genetically similar dogs. Each diet-restricted (DR) pair-mate was fed daily 75% of the same diet consumed by its control-fed (CF) pair-mate for life. Shoulders were evaluated radiographically at years 6, 8, and end of life (EOL). At EOL shoulders were evaluated grossly and by histopathology for OA.


Radiographic evidence of shoulder OA was identified in 78% of dogs. Severity of radiographic shoulder OA at 6 (P<.03) and 8 years (P<.02) was significantly lower among DR dogs compared with CF dogs. Pooled gross evaluation results revealed 40 of 46 dogs had cartilage erosion on the caudal aspect of the humeral head. By EOL, 91% of dogs had histopathologic changes consistent with OA.


There was a high overall prevalence of radiographic, gross, and histologic OA among dogs. Substantial disparity was found between radiographic evidence of OA (at EOL) and characteristic changes visible by gross and histologic examination.


Radiographic evaluation correlates poorly with severity of shoulder joint pathology. The benefits of DR on shoulder OA are consistent with the demonstrated effect of DR in delaying species- and strain-specific diseases of aging.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center