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Kienzle, Ellen and Bockhorni, Theresa (2018): Ernährung von Pferden mit Equine Pituitary Pars Interme dia Dysfunction („Cushing-Syndrom“) unter Pergolidtherapie. In: Tierärztliche Praxis Ausgabe Grosstiere Nutztiere, Vol. 46, No. 4: pp. 249-256

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Objective and aim: The nutritional status of 36 patients with equine pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID) under pergolide treatment was investigated. Animals, materials and methods: The body condition score (BCS) and feeding were determined at the beginning of the study and after 60 and 120 days. Sampled blood for control of pergolid therapy were used for insulin and glucose measurement. A standardized questionnaire regarding the symptoms of the disease, including hypertrichosis and weight change, was completed by the owners. Results: The mean BCS (scale of 1 = cachexia to 9 = grossly obese) was 3.1 +/- 0.8 (large horses 2.7 +/- 0.8, ponies 3.5 +/- 0.8). The mean energy requirement of the large horses was estimated to be 74 +/- 10 MJ of metabolizable energy, but the intake amounted only to 65 +/- 15 MJ. There was a significant correlation between the BCS and the estimated energy intake in percent of requirements in the large horses. The energy requirements of the ponies were generally met. The patients were fed a mean of 2.0 +/- 0.7 meals of roughage per day (total roughage intake per day 0.2-2.1 kg/100 kg body weight) and a maximum of one meal of concentrates. Sixteen ponies and one large horse did not receive any concentrates, whereas five ponies and 14 horses were fed concentrates (mean amount for ponies 0.15 kg and for large horses 0.8 kg). The requirements for zinc, copper, selenium and vitamins A and E were not met in the majority of patients. Blood glucose levels were within the reference range in all samples, but insulin levels were elevated in seven animals at least at one sampling point. The serious underweight of some of the patients was not recognized as a problem by some of the owners. Conclusion and practical relevance: Owners of PPID patients need more guidance on body condition scoring, amount of feed, number of meals, and logistics of feeding to avoid malnutrition of their animals.

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