Research Abstract

C11 - Echocardiographic Phenotype of Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy Differs Based on Diet

Thursday, June 14
6:00 PM - 6:15 PM
Location: WSCC 616/617

Taurine and carnitine deficiencies are associated with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs, but little is known about other diet-related etiologies.  Recognition of DCM in atypical breeds fed grain-free diets (GFD) prompted this study.

Diet histories and echocardiograms from dogs diagnosed with DCM at NCSU from 2015-2017 were evaluated.  Dogs were grouped by diet into GFD and non-grain-free (NGFD) groups. The GFD group was subdivided into dogs fed the most common brand (GFD-1) or other brands (GFD-o).  Echocardiographic parameters were compared between groups<./p>

Of 22 dogs with DCM fed GFD, 10 received GFD-1, including 2 pairs of unrelated housemates. No taurine or carnitine deficiencies were identified among the GFD dogs tested (11 taurine, 4 carnitine). Twenty-seven dogs with DCM were fed NGFD.  Of these, 5 of 11 tested were taurine deficient (3 vegetarian).  Dogs eating GFD-1 weighed less (23.1 ± 11.5kg); had greater normalized LV diameter in diastole (LVIDdN), 2.55 ± 0.26; and systole (LVIDsN) 2.05 ± 0.30; and lower sphericity index (SI) 1.24 ± 0.09 compared to dogs eating GFD-o (weight 35.9 ± 13.0kg, p = 0.03; LVIDdN 2.26 ± 0.33, p = 0.04; LVIDsN 1.79 ± 0.28, p = 0.05; SI 1.38 ± 0.18, p = 0.03) and compared to dogs eating NGFD (weight 33.5 ± 13.7, p = 0.04; LVIDdN 2.13 ± 0.23, p < 0.0001; LVIDsN 1.71 ± 0.21, p = 0.0006; SI 1.43 ± 0.20, p = 0.001).   Dogs eating GFD regardless of brand had greater LVIDdN (p = 0.0019), greater LVIDsN (p = 0.012) and lower SI (P = 0.016) than dogs eating NGFD. Prevalence of congestive heart failure was not different between GFD and NGFD groups<./p>

Echocardiograms of dogs with DCM fed GFD, and specifically GFD-1, suggest more advanced disease or a diet-enhanced pathophysiology compared to dogs eating NGFD. 

Darcy Adin, DVM, DACVIM (Cardiology)

Clinical Assistant Professor, Cardiology

Dr. Darcy Adin graduated from Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1996 and completed a cardiology residency at UC Davis in 1999. She has been board-certified in cardiology since 2000. Dr. Adin has held positions in private specialty practice and academia and is currently a Clinical Assistant Professor at North Carolina State University, College of Veterinary Medicine. Her research centers around optimization of heart failure treatment and understanding diuretics and the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system.


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C11 - Echocardiographic Phenotype of Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy Differs Based on Diet


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