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Hindgut fermentation in dogs

  • I Singh (a1), W Hendriks (a2), L Tucker (a3), D G Thomas (a1) and G Fahey (a4)...


There is a large body of research investigating the nutritional needs of the dog at different life-stages and the use of different feed ingredients in commercial diets (Clapper et al, 2001; Schroeder & Smith, 2008). Despite this, though there has been relatively little published work looking at the role the large intestine plays in nutrient digestion in the dog. The dog’s gastro-intestinal tract has been compared to the cat’s in terms of relative length. However the cat is a true carnivore and has little need to ferment fibre from the diet, whereas the dog is a scavenger and will consume a much wider range of food, and therefore may need to ferment fibrous material from the diet. The dog may therefore require a more developed large intestine to harbour a microbial population to aid in the digestion of this fibrous material. This study was performed to determine differences in digestion of nutrients in this segment of the canine gastrointestinal tract.


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Clapper, G.M., Grieshop, C.M., Merchen, N.R., Russett, J.C., Brent, J.L. & Fahey, G.C. 2001. Ileal and total tract nutrient digestibilities and fecal characterisitics of dogs as affected by soybean protein inclusion in dry, extruded diets. Journal of Animal Science 79, 1523–1532.
Schroeder, G.E. & Smith, G.A. 2008. Food intake and growth of German Shepherd puppies. Journal of Small Animal Practice 35, 587–591.
Walker, J.A., Harmon, D.L., Gross, K.L. & Collings, C.F. 1994. Evaluation of nutrient utilization in the canine using the ileal cannulation technique. Journal of Nutrition 124, 2672S–2676S.

Hindgut fermentation in dogs

  • I Singh (a1), W Hendriks (a2), L Tucker (a3), D G Thomas (a1) and G Fahey (a4)...


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