use of dogs for in surgical research studies

use of dogs for in surgical research studies

use of dogs for in surgical research studies

Dogs are mammals in the order carnivora, suborder caniformia (or superfamily arctoidea), and family canidae. the domesticated dog has been designated as canis familiaris. Other members of the genus canis include four species of jackals, the coyote {C. latrans}, the red wolf {C. rufus}, and the gray wolf {C. lupus}. Canis familiaris is subdivided into approximately 400 breeds, ranging in size and shape from the teacup chihuahua to the large Irish wolfhound. The domesticated dog is thought to have descended from a Eurasian subspecies of the gray wolf, possibly either the Indian wolf (C. lupus pallipes) or the Chinese wolf {C. lupus chanco}. Wolf-dog hybrids have been produced when the species are brought together in captivity (Nowak, 1999).

a/- Historical Use of Dogs in Research
The dog played an important role as a laboratory animal in the early history of biomedical research, primarily because of its status as a cooperative companion animal of reasonable size.

Dogs were used in the mid-1600s by William Harvey to study cardiac movement, by Marcello Malpighi to understand basic lung anatomy and function, and by Sir Christopher Wren to demonstrate the feasibility of intravenous delivery of medications {Gay, 1984}. The use of dogs continued as biomedical research advanced, and they were featured in many noteworthy studies, including those by Pavlov to observe and document the conditioned reflex response and by Banting and Best to identify the role of insulin in diabetes mellitus. For a comprehensive but a concise review of the use of the dog as a research subject, the readers are directed to the manuscript by Gay {1984}

b/-2. Current Use of Dogs in Research

The breed of dog most commonly bred for use in biomedical research is the beagle. Some commercial facilities also breed foxhounds or other larger-breed dogs for use in surgical research studies. Some specific breeds with congenital or spontaneous disorders are also maintained by research institutions (see specific examples below). Random-source dogs used in research are most frequently mongrels or larger-breed dogs (e.g., German shepherd, doberman pinscher, Labrador, and golden retrievers) that are used for surgical research and/or training.


scientific publications identified were in the fields of pharmacology or toxicology. Especially common were studies focusing on pharmacokinetics, alternative drug delivery systems, and cardiovascular pharmacology. The next most common areas of research using beagles were dental and periodontal disease and surgery (12% of publications), orthopedic surgery and skeletal physiology (7%), and radiation oncology (4%). Other research areas that utilized beagles included canine infectious disease,

surgery, imaging, prostatic urology, and ophthalmology.

Most large-sized dogs (either purpose-bred or random-source) are used in biomedical research because of their suitability for surgical procedures. Anesthetic protocols and systems
for dogs are well established, and the organs of larger-breed dogs are often an appropriate size for trials of potential pediatric surgical procedures. Surgical canine models have been used extensively in cardiovascular, orthopedic, and transplantation research.

There are also some unique spontaneous conditions for which dogs have proven to be valuable animal models. A colony of gray collies is maintained at the University of Washington (Seattle) for the study of cyclic hematopoiesis. This condition is manifested by periodic fluctuations of the cellular components of blood, most notably the neutrophil population. These dogs are used to study the basic regulatory mechanisms involved with hematopoiesis, 

the c/-The decline in Numbers Used
Although historically the dog has been a common laboratory animal, the use of dogs in research has been waning over the past few years. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (1998), the number of dogs used in research has declined

. This decrease was caused by a variety of factors, including (but not limited to) increased cost, decreased availability, local restrictive regulations, conversion to other animal models (such as livestock or rodents), and a shift in scientific interest from pathophysiology to molecular biology and genetics.
C. Availability and Sources
Dogs used for research are generally segregated into two
classes: purpose-bred and random-source. Purpose-bred dogs are those produced specifically for use in biomedical research; they are intended for use in long-term research projects and/or pharmacologic studies in which illness or medication would require removal from the study.
 Usually, these dogs are either beagles or mongrel foxhounds, although other breeds may be available.
purpose-bred dogs typically receive veterinary care throughout their stay at the breeding facility. 

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