Lactation failure in Dogs (Canis) | Vetlexicon
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Lactation failure

ISSN 2398-2942

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Introduction

  • Inadequate milk production → puppies fail to gain weight.
  • Signs: none to systemic illness in bitch.
  • Treatment: encourage bitch to feed, supplementary diet, treatment for mastitis, metritis.
  • Prognosis: good.

Presenting signs

  • Puppies crying, restless, weak, lethargic.
  • Puppies show poor weight gain.

Acute presentation

Age predisposition

  • Young.

Special risks

  • Death of puppies due to starvation.
  • Severe mastitis Mastitis → debilatation/death of bitch.
  • Severe metritis Acute metritis → morbidity to bitch.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Metritis - systemically sick dam.
  • Mastitis Mastitis.
  • Failure of milk letdown ; idiopathic prolactin deficiency or psychological inhibition.
  • Anatomincal; absent/blind teat or undeveloped mammary glands.

Predisposing factors

General
  • Age.
  • Temperament.

Specific

  • Nervous, inexperienced bitches, ie psychological/physiological failure of milk let down.
  • Physiologic failure of lactogenesis.

Pathophysiology


Poor milk production vs let down
  • Physiology of inhibition of milk let down due to stress (nervous bitches) is poorly understood or failure of milk evacuation by sucking.
  • Metritis Acute metritis.
  • Mastitis Mastitis → mammary gland malfunction (Absence of normal lactogenesis (the onset of lactation) and lactopoesis (the continuation of lactation)).
  • Prematurity.
  • Abnormal prolactin metabolism important in agalactia since pharmacological agents that suppress prolactin, eg bromocriptine , also suppress lactation Pseudopregnancy (false pregnancy or pseudocyesis).

Timecourse

  • Variable.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers