VetRepro

Stories and thoughts about small animal reproduction and ultrasound


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Aging of the canine prostate

Hi everybody!

In the next posts we will discuss a little bit about the prostate of the dog and will try to distinguish mythology from real life!

We all know that the prostate gland is changing in accordance with the age of the dog. These age-related changes have been documented in the veterinary literature. It is well known for example that the prostate gland commonly develops benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in intact male dogs over 5 years, while in dogs older than 6 years signs suggestive of prostatic disease are commonly found.

The incidence of prostatic diseases has risen steadily over the past years as a result of dog’s life expectancy increase!  The overall median age of death is 11 years approximately and, according to the literature, there is a tendency to increase more. This is the result of several different factors, such as better management, better nutrition, owner education and improved veterinary care and prevention.

Most common prostatic diseases such as BPH, and cysts are generally asymptomatic at their onset and their early detection would allow the veterinarian to plan specific follow up and to recommend effective therapeutic protocols. So, a non-invasive screening of the prostate status and health would be advisable as a part of a preventive medicine program of geriatric diseases in dogs.

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The physio-pathological process of aging of the prostate gland has been well studied, but still no information is available about at what age, how often and even whether a screening program of the prostate health should be recommended in dogs. To define a screening program, the age when the examination should begin, is the first decision to be made. Due to different breed’s expected longevity, a dog of a certain age might be considered as geriatric in large breeds, and not geriatric in small breeds. For instance, small-breed dogs become geriatric at about 11 years, whereas giant-breed dogs at 7 years. Longevity in crossbred dogs exceeds that of purebred dogs by 1.2 years and increasing bodyweight is negatively correlated with life expectancy. Thus, the age for the early detection of abnormalities in the prostate could vary in dogs of different breeds…

On the basis of all these, our group decided to perform a study in order to estimate the recommended age for a preventive ultrasonographic examination of the prostate in the dog. In the forthcoming posts, we will present you the design of our study! So stay tuned!

Till then, enjoy your life and love your pets!

 

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Ethics and small animal reproduction

Helen, a good friend of mine, a vet from Norway, showed me a couple of months ago a video that was viral in Norway. A video trying to inform and “sensitize” owners about the possible problems that brachycephalic breeds of dogs have. You can watch it by just clicking the following link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oghf4Figs_Q

Indeed, certain breeds of dogs and cats are prone to difficult, obstructive breathing, because of the shape of their head, muzzle and throat. This pathological syndrome is known as “brachycephalic syndrome” and can lead to severe respiratory distress.  According to ACVS (https://www.acvs.org/small-animal/brachycephalic-syndrome), “the term Brachycephalic Syndrome refers to the combination of elongated soft palate, stenotic nares, and everted laryngeal saccules.

So one obvious question someone could have is:

  • Should breeders reproduce animals of brachycephalic breeds the same way they have been doing till today? 

And not only that! In our modern “fast” world, several questions, concerning Ethics and small animal reproduction, arise:

  • Should we spay or not dogs and cats?
  • Which is the most suitable age to spay a dog or a cat?
  • Why retained testicles are so common in dogs and cats?
  • Which way can we avoid inherited diseases?

And further more:

  • Should we choose sex in fetuses?
  • What about cloning of small animals?
  • Cryopreservation of small animal embryos?
  • etc etc etc

And finally, who is leading and who should lead research on reproduction? Big pet-food companies? Pharmaceutical companies? Maybe breeders? Our clients? And is there any place for Ethics? What is the role of Education?

Hot questions! Impossible to answer all of them! But here are the good news: In the forthcoming 20th International Congress of Small Animal Reproduction that will be held in Vienna (Austria) from June 29th to July 1st 2017, the opening speech is exactly what we are talking about: “Ethics in Animal Breeding”, by Prof. W. Farstad! An excellent professor, vet, and breeder as well! This congress is organized by the European Veterinary Society of Small Animal Reproduction (EVSSAR), the largest society for small animal reproduction in Europe (and maybe in the world). EVSSAR aims to support continuing education of veterinarians and to promote research. More details about EVSSAR can be found here: http://www.evssar.org. The scientific program of the congress, in case you are interested, can be found here: http://www.evssar.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/20th-EVSSAR-program.pdf.

So at last, something seems to move… I will be back on the question above soon!

Oh I forgot: HAPPY EASTER!!!


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Survey for Vets!

Dear friends,
During the EVSSAR conference (Vienna, June 29th – July 1st 2017) we will organize an interactive project for our routines, experiences and opinions about ovulation timing in breeding bitches. More details can be found on EVSSAR‘s website:

www.evssar.org

For that purpose our colleague Sebastian Arlt has developed an online survey that it should not take you more than 3-4 minutes to complete. So if you are a Vet interested in small animal reproduction, click the following link (or copy it to your browser):

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfMCNXwlancuEIKwKhJZEN648637jECyWrngUSrZe0OQE1xKw/viewform?usp=sf_link

Thank you in advance for your participation! Hope to see you in Vienna,
On behalf of Sebastian Arlt and the EVSSAR Board,
George


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Small animals’ genital tract: Ultrasound vs microscope

On Sunday 18th of September a day conference “Small animals’ genital tract: Ultrasound vs microscope” was organized by Dr. Constantinos Teliousis  (good old friend) and me at the Hellenic Pasteur Institute in Athens.

More than 120 veterinarians attended the event! And they were satisfied!

All the aspects of ultrasound examination of the male and female genital tract of the dog and cat were covered , by answering the following three questions:
-When to perform ultrasound of the genital tract?
-Why to perform ultrasound?
-And finally how to perform ultrasound?

Normal and pathological sonographic appearance of the prostate, the testicles, the scrotum, the uterus and the ovaries of the dog and cat were presented, with several pictures and videos.

Pathology of the genital tract and the mammary glands of dog and cat was thoroughly covered by Constantinos. Cytological and histological findings of their most common diseases were also briefly reviewed. Constantinos also presented several useful “tips and tricks” for the clinical small animal practitioner!

Finally, a special thanks to our sponsor PetLine for funding and for helping organizing the whole thing!

 


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Proceedings of the ISCFR-EVSSAR Congress – Paris, 2016

The abstracts of the 8th International Symposium on Canine and Feline Reproduction (ISCFR-EVSSAR, Paris 2016) are available on line at IVIS website! If you want to download them, click here! Remember, you have to be registered to IVIS in order to have full access…

This excellent Symposium was the result of skillful and proficient work of the ISCFR International Organizing Committee members Prof. Michelle Kutzler, Prof. Pierre Comizzoli, Prof. Gary England and Prof. John Verstegen, in collaboration with the Scientific Program committee, and the Local Organizing Committee chaired by Prof. Alain Fontbonne and Associate Prof. Karine Reynaud. Of course we have to mention the excellent work of  all the members of the EVSSAR board!

Finally a big big thank you to all the vets from all over the world that participated actively and presented the results of their latest scientific work on all the fields of small animal (and not only) reproduction!

PS: The party organized from the local organizing committee was just awesome!  Thank you guys!

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News from the ISCFR-EVSSAR Congress – Paris, 2016

The 8th Quadrennial International Symposium on Canine and Feline Reproduction which is a  Joint Meeting with the 19th EVSSAR Congress, just finished. It was perfectly organized in Paris, the city of light, from 22 to 25 of June.

The scientific level of all speakers was very high and the program covered all the aspects of small animal reproduction science.

The results of our latest research projects were successfully presented:

– Ultrasound elastography of the normal canine prostate and testicles (G. Mantziaras, G.C. Luvoni).

-First documented report of CHV-1 infection of a pregnant bitch in Greece.  (G. Mantziaras, K. Teliousis, O. Mavropoulou, A. Pseftogas, G.C. Luvoni).

It was also a great chance to meet good friends from all over the word, discuss with them, and have a nice party on Friday night!

Finally, I was one of the three new EVSSAR’s Board members that have been elected during the General Assembly! A big big thank you to all those that honored me with their vote! I promise to do my best and work hard the following years!!!

We’ll be back soon and till than,

Take care of yourselves!