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Reference intervals for hematological and blood biochemistry values in healthy mules and hinnies

Citation

A. K. McLean, W. Wang, F. Navas-Gonzalez, J. B. Rodrigues. May 2016. Reference intervals for hematological and blood biochemistry values in healthy mules and hinnies. Comparative Clinical Pathology. 25:4. 871-878.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
10 May 2016
Volume: 
25
Issue: 
4
Page numbers: 
871-878
DOI number: 
10.1007/s00580-016-2276-3
Abstract

Little scientific information is known regarding mules and even less is known about hinnies. Due to increased popularity of both as recreational animals which are still commonly found as working equids, there is a need for such basic information for practitioners and owners. The purpose of this study was to begin to establish reference ranges for hematological and biochemical parameters of clinically healthy mules and hinnies compared to those of their sires and dams (horses and donkeys of similar genotype, phenotype within species) used for hybrid offspring production. Such information will contribute to our understanding and attempts to improve management and disease diagnosis of hinnies and mules. Eighty-one healthy equids (n = 30 hinnies, 20 mules, 20 donkeys, and 11 horses) were sampled. Clinical data recorded age, gender, BCS, and temperature. Two 10-mL blood samples were collected by venipuncture of the jugular vein, using “vacutainer” plain and EDTA tubes. These samples were analyzed for RBC, PCV, Hb, WBC, platelets, proteins, fatty acids, electrolytes, enzymes, and glucose. Average and standard deviations were calculated. Kruskal-Wallis test was used to test the significant value. Findings were considered to be significant if P ≤ 0.05. When comparing all parameters among four groups of equids, differences were found for temperature, red blood cell lines, white blood cell lines, electrolytes, and enzymes. Differences in mules and hinnies were seen in RBC, WBC, magnesium, bilirubin, creatinine, and AST. The results are constricted to very few known populations of equid hybrids with similar genetics. In this study, hinnies and mules showed results that were closer to those of horses than those of donkeys. Some differences recorded in hinnies may be related to age: RBC, WBC, MCH, MCV, eosinophils, magnesium, total bilirubin, creatinine, and AST. Findings may help establish new, relevant hematological and biochemical parameters which may prevent medical misdiagnosis. Additional research is needed with larger populations of healthy mules and hinnies.

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Focal gingival hyperplasia in a donkey

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, J. F. Requicha, F. San Roman, C. Viegas, A. Gama. March 2015. Focal gingival hyperplasia in a donkey. Journal of Veterinary Dentistry. 32:1. 54-55.

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Publication date: 
1 March 2015
Volume: 
32
Issue: 
1
Page numbers: 
54-55
DOI number: 
https://doi.org/10.1177/089875641503200106
Abstract

An 18-year old jenny was observed with a right maxillary tumefaction, presenting weight loss, quidding, dysphagia and halitosis. An external and intra oral examinations were performed. Both exams revealed a complete blockage of motion in the right mandible, due to the presence of severe shear mouth. A pedunculated mass was observed in the right maxillary vestibular space. It was speculated that the mass resulted from food debris acting as a source of gingival irritation, as a consequence of the shear mouth.
Gingival hyperplasia is a common histological feature in equids, due to close contact between an abrasive diet and oral tissues. However, on a macroscopic level, pathological proliferation of the gingival tissue is uncommon and seldom reaches significant dimensions, but still should be considered differential diagnoses when examining an equid with pertinent clinical signs, mainly when severe dental disorders are diagnosed.
This clinical case seems to be the first describing the occurrence of gingival fibrous hyperplasia apparently as a direct consequence of shear mouth in a donkey.

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Measuring conformation in mules, hinnies, and donkeys (Equus asinus) from Spanish and Portuguese populations

Citation

A. K. McLean, W. Wang, A. Heartfield, J. B. Rodrigues. May 2015. Measuring conformation in mules, hinnies, and donkeys (Equus asinus) from Spanish and Portuguese populations. Journal of Equine Veterinary Science. 35:5. 426-427.

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Publication date: 
1 May 2015
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Page numbers: 
426-427
DOI number: 
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jevs.2015.03.112
Abstract

Mules and hinnies are hybrid offspring of donkeys (Equus asinus) and horses (Equus caballus). Little scientific information is known regarding mules and even less is known about hinnies, the reciprocal cross. Conformation standards are in place for horses but currently are not available for equid hybrids or donkeys. Conformation maybe related to functionality and longevity of equids. All animals in this study were of similar genetics (Zamora Leones and Mirandes donkey breeds and Spanish horses) from Toro, Spain and Miranda do Douro, Portugal and used for traction.

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Viability analyses of an endangered donkey breed: the case of the Asinina de Miranda (Equus asinus)

Citation

M. Quaresma, A. M. F. Martins, J. B. Rodrigues, J. Colaço, R. Payan-Carreira. September 2014. Viability analyses of an endangered donkey breed: the case of the Asinina de Miranda (Equus asinus). Animal Production Science. 55:9. 1184-1191.

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Publication date: 
30 September 2014
Volume: 
55
Issue: 
9
Page numbers: 
1184-1191
DOI number: 
10.1071/AN13307
Abstract

The donkey breed Asinina de Miranda, with fewer than 1000 breeding females, is in danger of extinction. The objectives of this study were to predict the progression of the breed under present management and identify determinants for survival, by means of a population viability analysis program, in order to suggest suitable management strategies. The simulation showed a high risk of extinction. The most critical factor for breed survival was the percentage of females breeding per year, but the actual percentage needed depended on the carrying capacity of the breed. Reducing female mortality and age at production of first offspring, assuring registration in the Studbook, and tracking the foals will significantly foster this donkey breed’s recovery and maintenance. The breed comprised a potentially reproductive population of 589 individuals; however, just 54.1% of the adult females registered in the Studbook ever foaled, and of these 62.7% foaled just once. The overall neonatal mortality for the first month of life was 8.92% and was lower in females (6.51%) than in males (12.0%) (P = 0.028). Neonatal mortality was unevenly distributed throughout the year, with lower mortality rates recorded in February–May and October–November, and higher mortality rates in June–September and again in December–January. The neonatal foal mortality rate was lower with females aged 5–15 years (8.06%) than those younger than 4 years (10.3%) or older than 16 years (14.1%) at foaling.
Article first published online

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Influence of dental correction in nociceptive tests response, fecal appearance, body condition score and apparent dry matter digestibility of Zamorano-Leonés donkeys (Equus asinus)

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, L. M. Ferreira, E. Bastos, F. San Roman, C. Viegas, A. S. Santos. July 2013. Influence of dental correction in nociceptive tests response, fecal appearance, body condition score and apparent dry matter digestibility of Zamorano-Leonés donkeys (Equus asinus). Journal of Animal Science. 91. 4765-4771.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
1 July 2013
Volume: 
91
Page numbers: 
4765-4771
DOI number: 
10.2527/jas.2013-6311
Abstract

The influence of dental correction on nociceptive (pressure) test responses, fecal appearance, BCS, and apparent digestibility coefficient for DM was studied in 18 Zamorano-Leonés donkeys, an endangered local breed from the Zamora province in Spain. For this purpose, donkeys were divided into 2 homogeneous control and treatment groups, based on age, BCS, and dental findings. On d 1, 45, 90, and 135, BCS and nociceptive test responses were evaluated in all donkeys. Feed and fecal samples were collected from all donkeys for 3 consecutive days, starting at each of the aforementioned days. Apparent digestibility coefficient for DM was estimated, using ADL as an internal marker. A progressive decrease of positive nociceptive test responses was observed from d 1 up to 90 (P < 0.01) in the treatment group. No difference between groups was observed for BCS. However, BCS at d 90 was greater (P = 0.018) than observed on d 1 or 45, indicating a time influence. Concerning apparent digestibility coefficient for DM, there were differences among collection days in apparent digestibility coefficient for DM (P < 0.05). No differences in fecal appearance were observed between treatments or collection days. This study highlighted the importance of regular dental care for not only Zamorano-Leonés donkeys but also the equid population, in general, to improve their welfare.

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A clinical survey on the prevalence and types of cheek teeth disorders present in 400 Zamorano-Leonés and 400 Mirandês donkeys (Equus asinus)

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, Padraic M. Dixon, E. Bastos, F. San Roman, C. Viegas. November 2013. A clinical survey on the prevalence and types of cheek teeth disorders present in 400 Zamorano-Leonés and 400 Mirandês donkeys (Equus asinus). Veterinary Record. 173:23. 581.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
4 November 2013
Journal: 
Veterinary Record
Volume: 
173
Issue: 
23
Page numbers: 
581
Abstract

Dental disease is now recognised as a major but often unrecognised disorder of equids, including horses and donkeys. However, very few large clinical studies have documented the prevalence and type of dental disease present in different equid populations and no dental studies have been reported in Zamorano-Leonés or Mirandês donkeys, two endangered donkey breeds. Clinical and detailed oral examinations were performed in 400 Mirandês and 400 Zamorano-Leonés donkeys in Portugal and Spain. It was found that just 4.5 per cent had ever received any previous dental care. Cheek teeth (CT) disorders were present in 82.8 per cent of these donkeys, ranging from a prevalence of 29.6 per cent in the <2.5-year-old group to 100 per cent in the >25-year-old group. These CT disorders included enamel overgrowths (73.1 per cent prevalence but with just 6.3 per cent having associated soft tissue injuries), focal overgrowths (37.3 per cent), periodontal disease (23.5 per cent) and diastemata (19.9 per cent). Peripheral caries was present in 5.9 per cent of cases, but inexplicably, infundibular caries was very rare (1.3 per cent prevalence); this may have been due to their almost fully foraged diet. The high prevalence of enamel overgrowths in these donkeys, most which never received concentrates, also raises questions about the aetiology of this disorder. This very high prevalence of CT disorders, especially in older donkeys, was of great welfare concern in some cases and emphasises the need for routine dental care in these cases on welfare grounds and in order to help preserve these unique breeds.

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Analysis of new Matrilin-1 gene variants in a case-control study related to dental malocclusions in Equus asinus

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, S. Araujo, H. Guedes-Pinto, F. San Roman, C. Viegas, E. Bastos. June 2013. Analysis of new Matrilin-1 gene variants in a case-control study related to dental malocclusions in Equus asinus. Gene. 522:1. 702-74.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
10 June 2013
Journal: 
Gene
Volume: 
522
Issue: 
1
Page numbers: 
702-74
Abstract

Prognathism and brachygnathism are craniofacial deformities that severely affect the health of human and vertebrates, such as donkeys. The multifactorial etiology of this disease makes the genetic analysis a powerful tool for its understanding and prevention of spreading these deformities.
This study aims to contribute to the characterization of the genetic basis of prognathism and brachygnathism in donkeys, using the Zamorano-Leonés donkey, an endangered Spanish breed, as a model. Matrilin-1 (MATN1) polymorphisms have been previously described as markers for mandibular prognathism in Korean and Japanese human populations. Genetic variations in MATN1 gene were sought, in order to verify its association in a case–control study, including 30 donkeys presenting brachygnathism, 30 donkeys presenting prognathism and 30 donkeys with normal occlusion phenotypes. One genetic variation (g503G > A) located in an intronic region of MATN1 gene was identified and characterized. Statistically significant differences were detected between the control group and prognathism cases, but no statistical significant results were found between the control group and the brachygnathism cases. These results support evidence for an important role of MATN1 on prognathism in the analyzed population with MATN1 genetic variation – 503G > A – having a protective effect. Further studies should be developed in order to understand the whole role of MATN1 and the mechanisms affected by its genetic variations

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Percutaneous approach for sialolith removal in a donkey

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, S. Mora, E. Bastos, C. Viegas, F. San Roman. March 2013. Percutaneous approach for sialolith removal in a donkey. Journal of Veterinary Dentistry. 30:1. 32-35.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
1 March 2013
Volume: 
30
Issue: 
1
Page numbers: 
32-35
Abstract

Salivary duct lithiasis is a condition characterized by the partial or total obstruction of a salivary gland or its excretory duct due to the formation of sialoliths. A 9-year-old female donkey, belonging to the unique and endangered indigenous breed of donkey in Portugal, was diagnosed with a sialolith in the rostral portion of the right parotid duct based on clinical, oral, dental, and radiographic examination results. Surgical removal of the sialolith was done through a percutaneous approach.

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Polyodontia in donkeys

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, F. Sanroman-Llorens, E. Bastos, F. San Roman, C. Viegas. March 2013. Polyodontia in donkeys. Equine Veterinary Education. 25:7. 363-367.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
24 March 2013
Volume: 
25
Issue: 
7
Page numbers: 
363-367
DOI number: 
10.1111/eve.12030  
Abstract

Polyodontia is defined as the presence of teeth in excess of the normal dental formula. In equids, supernumerary teeth are uncommon but, when present, are usually located mainly in the caudal aspects of the cheek teeth rows (distomolars), also being found adjacent to normal cheek teeth or even in an ectopic location. It is believed that this disorder is a result of an inappropriate differentiation of dental germinal tissue during gestational development, with external trauma also acting as an initiating factor, when teeth germs are affected. The presence of these abnormal teeth can lead to axial displacement, dental overgrowths, dental-related soft tissue damage, diastemata formation, periodontal disease and development of secondary sinusitis. A large prospective, cross-sectional study was performed in 800 donkeys, with the aim to investigate the prevalence and aetiopathogenesis of clinically diagnosed oral and dental disorders. Polyodontia was recorded in 2.25% of the donkeys, presenting 36 supernumerary teeth, with 2.80% being incisors and 97.20% cheek teeth, with prevalence increasing with age. The caudal aspects of the maxillary cheek teeth rows were the most common locations for supernumerary teeth development (distomolars). The mandible was far less commonly affected than the maxilla. Although polyodontia is uncommon in donkeys, it should be considered in the differential diagnosis of dental disease. A methodical oral examination and a complete radiographic survey of the entire dental arcades are crucial for a correct early diagnosis and treatment plan implementation. The increasing prevalence of fully erupted supernumerary teeth recorded in older groups suggested a late onset eruption process, and therefore, in donkeys undergoing regular dental prophylaxis, the presence of previously unnoticed supernumerary teeth should always be sought.

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A clinical survey evaluating the prevalence of incisor disorders in Zamorano-Leonés and Mirandês donkeys (Equus asinus)

Citation

J. B. Rodrigues, S. Araujo, F. Sanroman-Llorens, E. Bastos, F. San Roman, C. Viegas. September 2013. A clinical survey evaluating the prevalence of incisor disorders in Zamorano-Leonés and Mirandês donkeys (Equus asinus). Journal of Equine Veterinary Science. 33:9. 710-718.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
1 September 2013
Volume: 
33
Issue: 
9
Page numbers: 
710-718
Abstract

Recent clinical and post-mortem studies documented a high prevalence of dental disorders in donkeys, but less information appears to be available specifically about incisor disorders in donkeys. A study to investigate the prevalence of oral and dental disorders affecting incisor teeth was performed, in two endangered breeds of donkeys: the Mirandês Donkey and the Zamorano-Leonés Donkey, through a prospective cross-sectional study in 800 donkeys, divided in 7 age groups (ranging 0-34 years), in 86 villages inside their geographic area of distribution, thinking on welfare and genetic preservation issues. The 74% of donkeys suffer from incisors disorders, ranging from 56.8% in the youngest group to 90.3% in group 7. Craniofacial abnormalities (49.25%), abnormalities in the occlusal surface (21.63%), fractures (17%), periodontal disease (16.13%) and diastemata (14.38%) were the main disorders recorded. Incisors disorders are significant, presenting at a much higher prevalence when compared to other studies involving the incisor teeth of equids, affecting all ages but particularly in older animals. This study provide essential information in dentistry applied to donkeys but also highlighted the importance of regular dental care in endangered breeds, improving their welfare and preserving a unique genetic heritage.

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