Send to

Choose Destination
Vet Anaesth Analg. 2009 Nov;36(6):539-46. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-2995.2009.00495.x.

The effect of pre-anaesthetic fasting time and type of food on gastric content volume and acidity in dogs.

Author information

Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Unit, Companion Animal Clinic, Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece.



To investigate the effect of pre-anaesthetic fasting time and variety of food on gastric content (GC) volume and pH in dogs.


Randomized, cross-over, prospective experimental study.


Fifteen mongrel dogs (nine females and six males 1-4 years old, weighing 10-24.5 kg).


Each dog received the same seven treatments in random order: dry food 3 hours before anaesthesia (BA) (treatment 3D), canned food (half daily rate) 3 hours BA (treatment 3C), 0% fat cow milk 3 hours BA (treatment 3M), dry food 10 hours BA (treatment 10D), canned food 10 hours BA (treatment 10C), low fat canned food 10 hours BA (treatment 10F) and low protein canned food 10 hours BA (treatment 10P). All animals were pre-medicated with propionyl promazine and anaesthesia was induced with thiopental sodium and maintained with halothane. GC was aspirated using an orogastric catheter and its volume and pH were measured.


Treatment 10F had significantly lower GC pH than all the 3-hour treatments. Treatments 10D and 10P had significantly lower pH than treatments 3D and 3C. Treatment 3M had significantly lower pH than the other 3-hour treatments. Treatment 3D had significantly greater gastric volume than treatments 3M, 10C, 10F and 10P.


Canned food at half the daily rate administered 3 hours before anaesthesia did not increase significantly the GC volume compared to the other types of food used. The GC pH was also high. This type of food fed 3 hours before induction of anaesthesia may be of benefit in reduction of the incidence of gastro-oesophageal reflux during anaesthesia in dogs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center