Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica

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ISSN / EISSN : 0044-605X / 1751-0147
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Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-34; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00592-0

Abstract:
Acute pancreatitis in dogs is a prevalent disease characterised by mild to severe inflammation. Treatment with anti-inflammatory corticosteroids has been widely debated but is not generally recommended in veterinary medicine. The objective of the present study was to present current evidence on the effect of corticosteroid treatment for acute/acute-on-chronic pancreatitis across species. These findings were then used to evaluate if and how corticosteroid treatment could influence disease outcome in canine acute/acute-on-chronic pancreatitis. A scoping review was performed by searching the Agricola, CAB Abstracts, MEDLINE and Embase databases to identify relevant articles published before June 24, 2021. The inclusion criteria were English language, original research published in a peer-reviewed journal, and investigation of corticosteroid treatment effects on acute/acute-on-chronic pancreatitis by the outcome parameters clinical score, circulating CRP level, hospitalisation duration, mortality and pancreas histopathology. Research on any species was considered. Studies were rated based on the level of evidence, and methodological quality was evaluated based on similarity between groups at baseline, risk of bias and study group size. The reporting method was based on the PRISMA extension for scoping reviews. One thousand nine hundred fifty-four studies were identified, and 31 met the inclusion criteria. Five were canine studies, with 4 investigating experimentally induced pancreatitis; 5 were human clinical studies; and 21 were rodent studies of experimentally induced pancreatitis. The level of evidence ranged between randomised controlled trials and case series, the estimated risk of bias ranged from low to high, and the sample sizes ranged from very small to moderate. Evidence indicates that adding corticosteroid to symptomatic treatment of acute/acute-on-chronic canine pancreatitis could have a positive influence on disease outcome. However, the analysed evidence was based on several species, including both naturally occurring and experimentally induced pancreatitis; thus, the authors suggest that large randomised controlled studies should be performed in dogs with spontaneously occurring acute/acute-on-chronic pancreatitis to further elucidate a potential benefit of corticosteroid treatment.
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-7; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00593-z

Abstract:
Background Steroid responsive meningitis-arteritis (SRMA) is an immune-mediated disease of the leptomeninges and its associated blood vessels, typically responsive to corticosteroids. Clinically relevant haemorrhage is a rare finding in such patients and for this reason surgical decompression of the spinal cord is normally not considered. The diagnosis of SRMA is supported by serum C-reactive protein (CRP) increase, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) examination, including cytology (polymorphonuclear pleocytosis in the acute form), nucleated cell-, red blood cell- and protein count, as well as by evaluating CSF and serum IgA concentrations. D-dimer concentrations in serum and CSF should be elevated as well and therefore can be also evaluated as a further diagnostic tool. Case presentation A 1.5-year-old mixed breed dog was presented with pyrexia, cervical pain and acute tetraparesis. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed an extradural mass lesion at the level of the sixth cervical vertebra, consistent with a subacute epidural haemorrhage, causing severe compression of the spinal cord. Based on the dog’s signalment, clinical history and results of the blood and CSF analyses (incl. D-dimer determination), SRMA with secondary epidural haemorrhage was suspected. Decompressive surgery was performed through a right sided partial dorsal laminectomy. Post-surgical immunosuppressive treatment was started with cytarabine and then continued with prednisolone after completion of wound healing. Conclusions This is the first report in which medical and surgical treatment were combined in a patient with SRMA and it highlights the possibility of performing a successful surgical intervention despite the need for immunosuppressive therapy. Moreover, while SRMA diagnosis is normally based on CSF analysis and CSF and serum IgA concentrations, D-dimer concentrations in serum and CSF were also useful in this patient.
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-7; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00591-1

Abstract:
Background Naso-ethmoidal meningoencephalocele is usually a congenital anomaly consisting of a protrusion of cerebral tissue and meninges into the ethmoidal labyrinth. The condition is a rare cause of structural epilepsy in dogs. We report the clinical presentation, surgical intervention, postoperative complications and outcome in a dog with drug resistant epilepsy secondary to a meningoencephalocele. Case presentation A 3.3-year-old male neutered Tamaskan Dog was referred for assessment of epileptic seizures secondary to a previously diagnosed left-sided naso-ethmoidal meningoencephalocele. The dog was drug resistant to medical management with phenobarbital, potassium bromide and levetiracetam. Surgical intervention was performed by a transfrontal craniotomy with resection of the meningoencephalocele and closure of the dural defect. Twenty-four hours after surgery the dog demonstrated progressive cervical hyperaesthesia caused by tension pneumocephalus and pneumorrhachis. Replacement of the fascial graft resulted in immediate resolution of the dog’s neurological signs. Within 5 months after surgery the dog progressively developed sneezing and haemorrhagic nasal discharge, caused by sinonasal aspergillosis. Systemic medical management with oral itraconazole (7 mg/kg orally q12h) was well-tolerated and resulted in resolution of the clinical signs. The itraconazole was tapered with no relapsing upper airway signs. The dog’s frequency of epileptic seizures was not affected by surgical resection of the meningoencephalocele. No treatment adjustments of the anti-epileptic medication have been necessary during the follow-up period of 15 months. Conclusions Surgical resection of the meningoencephalocele did not affect the seizure frequency of the dog. Further research on prognostic factors associated with surgical treatment of meningoencephaloceles in dogs is necessary. Careful monitoring for postsurgical complications allows prompt initiation of appropriate treatment.
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00590-2

Abstract:
Background Wide variation in fertility rates is observed when using frozen bull semen, even when the bulls have met quality standards for semen production. Therefore, a simple and reliable test to assess the freezing potential of bull semen based on the analysis of fresh semen or blood would be of great value. Attention is now turning to assessment of seminal plasma components such as proteins and elements. In the present study, the concentrations of macro- and microelements in fresh bull semen plasma and in serum and their correlation with quality characteristics of fresh semen and with semen quality after freezing and thawing were determined. Ejaculates were collected from 30 mature bulls, and semen volume, concentration, sperm motility, morphology, tail membrane integrity, plasma membrane permeability and DNA fragmentation were determined on the day of collection and after freezing and thawing. The concentrations of macroelements (Na, Mg, K and Ca) and microelements (Cu, Fe, Zn and Se) were determined in the seminal plasma and serum. The semen samples were classified into satisfactory and unsatisfactory groups according to the fresh semen quality. Results Zinc and Se levels measured in serum were associated with almost all fresh and frozen-thawed semen quality characteristics, while Fe levels were associated only with acrosomal defects in fresh semen. Zinc and Fe levels in fresh seminal plasma were associated with various quality characteristics of fresh and frozen-thawed semen, while Se level in fresh seminal plasma was not associated with any of the semen quality characteristics. Conclusions Microelements were shown to be useful as biomarkers involved in the analysis of bull sperm quality and could be used as an additional tool to predict bull semen quality after freezing and thawing. Our results confirm that the analysis of Zn and Se levels in serum and Zn, Cu and Fe levels in fresh seminal plasma can provide information to discriminate between bull semen samples with spermatozoa with high or low cryotolerance.
, Rafał Łopucki, Marta Gałązka, Agnieszka Ścibior, Dorota Gołębiowska, Rita Brzezińska, Bartosz Kruszewski, Tadeusz Kaleta, Wanda Olech
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-12; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00589-9

Abstract:
Background Captive European bison (Bison bonasus) play an active role in conservation measures for this species; this includes education, which may conflict with these animals’ welfare. The effect of the presence of visitors on the welfare of captive animals can be negative, positive or neutral. However, the response of a given species to visitors is difficult to predict, since even closely related species display varying levels of tolerance to captivity. The aim of the study was to compare immunoreactive fecal cortisol levels (regarded as an indicator of the level of physiological stress) in groups of captive European bison that differed in terms of their social structure and the level of visitor pressure. The second aim was to determine if there was a correlation between intestinal parasitic burden and immunoreactive fecal cortisol levels. Results Immunoreactive fecal cortisol levels were not influenced by sex or age. However, study site and the interaction between study site and visitor pressure were statistically significant. European bison in one enclosure presented higher levels of immunoreactive fecal cortisol on weekdays than at weekends. In the other two study sites, the levels did not differ between weekdays and weekends. No correlation was found between parasitological infestation and immunoreactive fecal cortisol levels. Conclusions Measurement of fecal cortisol metabolites could be a valuable method for further research into the welfare of European bison in captivity. More subtle factors such as individual animal characteristics, feeding systems, and the arrangement of enclosures can be of great importance in terms of the effect of visitors on animals. The results of this study can be used in guidelines for the management of European bison populations.
Per-Arne Åhlen, , Margareta Stéen
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-11; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00588-w

Abstract:
Background The parasitic fauna of beavers (Castor fiber and C. canadensis) has been well studied in many parts of their respective areas of distribution. In Scandinavia there have, however, been limited investigations conducted on the parasites of beavers in recent times. The present study is the first quantitative survey of parasites on beavers living in Sweden and elsewhere in Scandinavia. We investigated the parasitic fauna of the Eurasian beaver (C. fiber) in a North–South gradient in Sweden. The aim of the study was to investigate parasite distribution and prevalence in particular, related to average yearly air temperature and different age groups of beavers. A total of 30 beavers were sampled at eight localities, spanning a 720 km North–South gradient during the springs of 1997 and 1998. Results Five parasite taxa were identified. Four of these were present in all of the examined beavers, Stichorchis subtriquetrus (trematode), Travassosius rufus (nematode), Platypsyllus castoris (coleopteran), and Schizocarpus spp. (arachnid). A higher number of new infections of S. subtriquetrus, and more adults of T. rufus, were seen in beavers in southern Sweden where temperatures are higher. One-year old beavers had a higher infestation of S. subtriquetrus, but not of T. rufus, than older individuals. Conclusions The parasite fauna of Swedish beavers mirrored the impoverished parasite fauna of the original Norwegian population, and the high prevalence of parasites could be due to low major histocompatibility complex (MHC) polymorphism. Young beavers had a higher load of trematodes, probably depending on behavioural and ecological factors. Warmer temperatures in southern localities likely contributed to increased endoparasite loads.
, Débora Gouveia, Ana Cardoso, Óscar Gamboa, Darryl Millis, António Ferreira
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-12; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00585-z

Abstract:
Domestic animals with severe spontaneous spinal cord injury (SCI), including dogs and cats that are deep pain perception negative (DPP−), can benefit from specific evaluations involving neurorehabilitation integrative protocols. In human medicine, patients without deep pain sensation, classified as grade A on the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) impairment scale, can recover after multidisciplinary approaches that include rehabilitation modalities, such as functional electrical stimulation (FES), transcutaneous electrical spinal cord stimulation (TESCS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (TDCS). This review intends to explore the history, biophysics, neurophysiology, neuroanatomy and the parameters of FES, TESCS, and TDCS, as safe and noninvasive rehabilitation modalities applied in the veterinary field. Additional studies need to be conducted in clinical settings to successfully implement these guidelines in dogs and cats.
Dorcas Oyueley Kodie, Noah Segun Oyetayo, Oladotun Solomon Awoyemi, Cecelia Omowunmi Oguntoye,
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-5; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00586-y

Abstract:
Background Cryptorchidism in dogs is of clinical concern due to its association with development of Sertoli cell tumours, seminomas and spermatic cord torsion. A patent inguinal ring has been found as a risk factor for peritoneal content migration and inguinal hernias. This study reports a case of bowel migration through a patent inguinal ring in a bilaterally cryptorchid dog and incarceration within the vaginal tunic of the left testicle. Case presentation A three-and-a-half-year-old bilaterally cryptorchid Lhasa Apso with a history of anorexia, vomiting, stranguria and inability to defecate was diagnosed with bowel incarceration in the vaginal tunic of a retained left testicle. Surgery performed under epidural anaesthesia with acepromazine/butorphanol premedication revealed a loop of the colon entrapped in the vaginal tunic of the retained left testicle. The incarcerated bowel was thoroughly examined for viability and repositioned into the abdominal cavity. The inguinal ring was repaired and bilateral cryptorchidectomy performed. Conclusion Cryptorchidectomy in dogs is often considered when there is concern for neoplasm or torsion of retained testes. However, this report suggests that cryptorchidectomy should be considered also to preclude the possibility of bowel obstructive emergencies.
, Ingrid Hunter Holmøy, Ane Nødtvedt, Cecilie Marie Mejdell
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-5; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00587-x

Abstract:
The knowledge on dairy calves’ needs with regards to milk feeding and social housing is expanding but to be able to make improvements, knowledge is needed on how calves are managed at present in Norway. The aim of this study was to describe selected milk-feeding practices and social housing procedures for young (pre-weaning) dairy calves in Norwegian herds. A short questionnaire was distributed to a random sample of 912 dairy producers. For each herd, we asked how much milk was fed to 3 week old dairy calves, number of daily milk feedings, usage of milk replacer, number of weeks calves were housed in single pens, and whether calves at 3 weeks had free access to drinking water. In total, 508 herd managers responded to the questionnaire (56% response rate). Descriptive statistics showed that median milk allowance for 3 week old calves was seven (IQR 6–8) L milk/d, ranging from 2 to 15 L/day. Consequently, 311 (61%) herds reportedly fed less than the current industry recommendation in Norway (8 L milk/d to young calves). Automatic milk feeders were used by 30 herds (6%). In herds feeding milk manually (n = 471), half of the herds (50%) fed milk twice daily. Median number of daily milk feedings was 3 (31%) while 13% fed four times/day or more frequent (6%). Of the 226 producers (46%) who reported to use milk replacer, this milk type was used from the calf age of (median) 2 weeks. Of all herds, 82 (16%) did not provide their 3 week old calves with free access to drinking water. In the surveyed herds, calves were housed in single pens for (median) 2 weeks (IQR 2–3), while legislation allows single housing until the age of 8 weeks. In conclusion, the milk allowances reported in this survey are low compared to industry recommendations which again are low compared to voluntary intakes of young dairy calves. Free access to drinking water is important to calf welfare but was not granted to all dairy calves. Most calves were reportedly group housed at an early age, which indicates an improved awareness with regards to the importance of social housing.
Agnieszka Tylkowska, Bogumiła Pilarczyk, Agnieszka Tomza-Marciniak, Renata Pilarczyk
Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, Volume 63, pp 1-7; doi:10.1186/s13028-021-00584-0

Abstract:
Background The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is widely distributed in the Northern Hemisphere and Australia. The presence of nematode-infected foxes in urbanized areas increases the risk of transmission of nematodes to domestic dogs and thus, to humans. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and species composition of intestinal nematodiasis in red foxes in Western Pomerania, a province in north-western Poland. The intestinal contents of 620 red foxes killed during a government reduction shooting programme were examined for adult nematodes using the sedimentation and counting technique (SCT). Results Intestinal nematodes, including Toxocara canis, Toxascaris leonina, Uncinaria stenocephala and Trichuris vulpis, were found in 77.3% (95% CI 73.8–80.4%) of the examined foxes with a mean infection burden of 20.1 nematode per animal. Male and female foxes had similar infection burdens. Conclusions The nematodes are present in high prevalence and intensity among foxes in north-western Poland. Furthermore, this high prevalence of nematodes in foxes may likely constitute a health risk to humans and domestic animals due to increasing fox densities in urban and periurban areas.
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