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Thread: French study of 1,668 CKCS bitches shows birth, still-born & post natal mortality

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    Default French study of 1,668 CKCS bitches shows birth, still-born & post natal mortality

    French study of 1,668 cavalier bitches shows birth, still-born, and post natal mortality rates.
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    http://www.cavalierhealth.org/miscel...ortality_rates
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    Rod Russell

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    It is part of a larger study:

    Reproductive performance and pre-weaning mortality: Preliminary analysis of 27,221 purebred female dogs and 204,537 puppies in France

    The objective of this study was to describe efficiency of reproduction of purebred dogs in field breeding conditions, from mating to weaning in France. Data were collected between 2010 and 2014 in 5,667 French breeding kennels via a reproduction management software (Breeding Management System, Royal Canin, Aimargues, France). Effect of breed size (Mini: adult body weight <10 kg; Medium: 10–25 kg; Maxi: 25–40 kg; Giant: >40 kg), age of dam and male on pregnancy rate, abortion rate and litter size were evaluated by multivariable models. Data on 45,913 heats (all with mating), from 27,221 bitches from 248 breeds, were analysed. At mating, mean age (±SD) was 3.1 ± 1.8 years for bitches and 3.3 ± 2.0 for males. Males originated from the same kennel as the females in 88.5% of the matings. Based on breeder's evaluation of the pregnancy status, pregnancy rate (number of pregnant females based on breeders declaration/number of heats) was 87.8% and abortion rate was 6.8%. Finally, 81.9% of the mated females gave birth to a litter. On 37,946 litters (204,537 puppies), mean litter size was 5.4 ± 2.8 puppies (range 1–24), which was influenced by breed size and dam age (p < .0001). Stillbirth rate was 7.4% and puppy mortality rate (stillbirth + mortality until 2 months of age) was 13.4%. Prolificacy and puppy mortality rates were affected by breed size and within a breed size, by breed. Despite probable approximations (as data originate from breeders declaration), this large-scale analysis provides reference values on reproductive performance in dogs.

    The full study can be bought from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/wol1/...rda.12845/full

    but it doesn't really say anything new! A thesis in 2013

    https://oatao.univ-toulouse.fr/10834/1/Belin_10834.pdf

    showed that, basically, small breeds have a lower still birth and lower neonatal mortality rate than medium size and bigger breeds. The dogs in the Toulouse Universtity student's thesis came from commercial kennels. I am reasonably sure that commercial kennels are likely to have higher levels of neonatal loss as they don't have their pups and mothers under quite the amount of observation, or have them next to the bed overnight, as we tend to do! Neonatal losses tend to be higher in summer, and also higher for very small puppies. Her study showed a higher average neomortality rate on a smaller number of puppies: of 2,288 puppies, 524 died, so 22.8%. Half were born dead, and 11% showed physical abnormalities.

    Cavaliers tend to have smallish litters - the French club did an accurate study a few years ago, and the average of live puppies was just below 4 per litter. This is easy to do as all matings must be declared as must all puppies born, and at eight weeks they must have permanent ID: all these records are available to the relevant breed club.

    My own average is just over 4 puppies per litter, including three litters of one single puppy (all three were bitches ) one litter of seven and dozen of five or six. I've never had a bitch abort a litter, and still births and neonatal births counted for 15.2% of all puppies born: I include bitches I whelped for other people. Of those that died after birth, all but one were in the first week and the other didn't grow much and had fits so I had him euthanised. That was 20+ years ago but I still remember it clearly.

    Jane
    Last edited by Janelise; 11-14-2016 at 08:37 AM.

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