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Res Vet Sci. 2010 Apr;88(2):227-32. doi: 10.1016/j.rvsc.2009.07.009. Epub 2009 Aug 18.

Effect of breed on body composition and comparison between various methods to estimate body composition in dogs.

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Affinity-Petcare, Research and Development, 08174 Barcelona, Spain.


The objectives of this clinical study were firstly, to assess the effects of breed/genetic group on body composition in dogs using Dual-X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) as the reference method and secondly, to check, in clinical field conditions, if methods easy to apply in veterinary practice [bioelectrical impedance (BIA), morphometric equations, body condition score and body mass index] can give similar body composition results to DEXA results, using canine breeds with very different genetic and morphologic backgrounds. 19 dogs from 6 breeds with different genetic origin were used. Results showed that breed differences exist regarding body composition in dogs. Body condition score and morphometric equation should be developed by breed or by groups of breeds for an accurate estimation of body composition of the various breeds of dogs with a different genetic background or morphology. Any of the other tested methodologies (BIA or morphometric equations) gave results in agreement with DEXA value, when dogs with different genetic background and morphologic characteristics are used, but BIA, eventually in combination with morphometric measurements, could be a method to develop to estimate fat-free mass in dogs of different breeds.

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