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Am J Vet Res. 2012 Jan;73(1):125-33. doi: 10.2460/ajvr.73.1.125.

Effect of submaximal aerobic exercise on platelet function, platelet activation, and secondary and tertiary hemostasis in dogs.

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  • 1Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Clinical Pathology and Clinical Pathophysiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Justus-Liebig University, 35392 Giessen, Germany.



To investigate whether submaximal aerobic exercise in dogs is followed by activation of all phases of coagulation as has been reported for humans.


9 healthy Beagles.


30 minutes before dogs were exercised, a 16-gauge central venous catheter was placed in a jugular vein of each dog by use of the catheter-through-the-needle technique. Samples were collected before exercise, after running on a treadmill (6 km/h for 13 minutes), and at 60 minutes. Platelet activation was evaluated with platelet morphology indices (mean platelet component, mean platelet volume, and number of large platelets) provided by a laser-based hematology system. Platelet function was assessed in hirudin-anticoagulated whole blood with an impedance-based aggregometer with collagen as the agonist (final concentrations, 0, 1.6, 3.2, 5, and 10 μg/mL). Prothrombin time, activated partial thromboplastin time, and concentrations of fibrinogen, factor VIII, antithrombin, protein C, protein S, and fibrin D-dimer were determined automatically. Kaolin-activated thromboelastography variables R (reaction time), K (clot formation time), angle α, maximal amplitude, and G (clot stability) were measured in recalcified citrated whole blood.


Exercise resulted in a significant decrease in mean platelet volume and the number of large platelets but did not change the mean platelet component, which reflected platelet activation as well as platelet function. Secondary and tertiary coagulation did not change significantly, nor did thromboelastography variables.


Aerobic exercise resulted in a decrease in the number of large and thus most likely activated platelets but otherwise had no major impact on coagulation in dogs.

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