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Am J Vet Res. 1993 May;54(5):719-23.

Apparent dietary protein requirement of dogs with portosystemic shunt.

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Department of Physiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens 30602.


Current medical management of dogs with portosystemic shunt (PSS) includes dietary protein restriction. After establishment of baseline values, 32 dogs underwent portosystemic anastomosis to induce PSS. They were assigned to 1 of 4 dietary treatments, and given 11 or 24% crude protein (CP); 20% of the protein was derived from branched chain or aromatic amino acids. The apparent digestibility of CP and of total digestible energy were not affected by PSS. The apparent digestibility of fat decreased from 92% to 85% in dogs with PSS (P < 0.01). Across all diets, the apparent dietary protein requirement (ADPR) was 2.07 g of CP/kg of body weight/d in clinically normal dogs and 2.11 g of CP/kg/d after PSS. Dietary amino acid composition had no effect on ADPR. The ADPR for dogs fed the 11% protein diets was 1.69 g of CP/kg/d in clinically normal dogs and 1.62 g of CP/kg/d after PSS, whereas the ADPR in dogs fed the 24% protein diets was 3.94 g of CP/kg/d before PSS and 3.31 g of CP/kg/d after PSS. Serum total protein, urea nitrogen, and albumin concentrations were lower in dogs with PSS fed the 11% protein diets, compared with those fed the 24% protein diets. We conclude that there is no difference in ADPR in dogs with PSS; however, the low protein intake of 1.62 g of CP/kg/d appeared inadequate to maintain normal protein stores. Dietary protein that provides at least 2.1 g of CP/kg/d is recommended for dogs with PSS.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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