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Theriogenology. 2010 Oct 15;74(7):1115-20. doi: 10.1016/j.theriogenology.2010.05.008. Epub 2010 Jun 30.

Assessing reproductive patterns and disorders in free-ranging dogs in Jodhpur, India to optimize a population control program.

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1
Department of Population Medicine, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1, Canada. sarah.totton@gmail.com

Abstract

The objectives were to test the hypothesis that estrus and pregnancy are seasonal in free-ranging female dogs (>3 mo old) in Jodhpur, India, and to determine litter size, and the prevalence of fetal resorption in this population. The prevalence of estrus and pregnancy was determined in 5400 free-ranging bitches (trapped and released) at the time of ovariohysterectomy. In a separate study, the uteri and ovaries of 246 free-ranging bitches were examined to determine litter size and fetal resorption. The bitches exhibited seasonal estrus and pregnancy (P < 0.00001), with a higher percentage of bitches in estrus or pregnant during the late monsoon season (September to November) compared to the other three seasons. The mean litter size based on embryo/fetal counts was 4.6 (95% CI = 4.0-5.3; n = 40) and based upon placental site counts was 4.4 (95% CI = 3.9-4.8; n = 105). Prevalence of fetal resorption was 32.6% (95% CI = 20.5-47.5; n = 43) with a mean of 2.8 resorptions per litter in those with at least one resorption (95% CI = 1.8-3.8; n = 14). This was the first study to estimate previous litter size of non-pregnant, free-ranging dogs based upon placental sites. Litter size data from this study will be used in a population demographic model to predict the long-term impact of animal birth control (ABC) on the free-ranging dog population in Jodhpur. Increasing the efforts to surgically sterilize bitches prior to the time of year of peak pregnancy or whelping will help maximize the impact of an ABC program on the Jodhpur free-ranging dog population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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