The aim of this study was to determine several obstetric and neonatal parameters in the Maine Coon breed. The birth data of Maine Coon breeding population were collected of 52 litters from different households using a questionnaire. Significant relationships between various outcomes and the relevant predictors were assessed by multiple linear regression or logistic regression, as appropriate. The overall mean gestation length was 65.5±1.32 days. Larger litter size was associated with shorter gestation lengths (p<0.01). Mean litter size was 5.3±2.3 kittens. The weight of kittens born alive (overall mean 119.6±18.4 g) increased with prolonged gestation lengths (p<0.01) and decreased with larger litter sizes (p<0.01). In the analyzed group of kittens, 12.5% were stillborn. The expulsion intervals varied widely. The duration of the first stage of labour was less than 2h in 82.9% of the cats. The interval between the birth of the first and the last kitten was less than 6h in 99.3% of the cats, and it exceeded 6 h in only 2 cats. The present results can be used to develop references values and reliable assistance protocol for assessing the parturition in the Maine Coon to protect the queen and reduce perinatal losses.
Allergic skin diseases in cats are amongst the most prevalent dermatological conditions in this species. The objectives of this study were to evaluate different types of skin barrier measurements in healthy cats and cats with non-flea non-food hypersensitivity dermatitis (NFNFHD). 24 clinically healthy and 19 NFNFHD cats were included in this clinical trial. In each animal, the transepidermal water loss (TEWL) and skin hydration (SH) were assessed on six clipped body sites by VapoMeter SWL 4605 and Corneometer ®CM 825, respectively. Results of TEWL measurement were , significantly higher in one of the six examined body sites, namely on the lumbar area (p=0.0049). Furthermore, a statistically significant difference was found between the average TEWL values (p=0.019). Statistically notable differences were mea- sured at least in one certain body site for SH: in the groin (p=0.02), where the values in the affect- ed cats were lower than in the healthy individuals. These results may suggest that in NFNFHD cats transepidermal water loss is higher than in healthy cats. Skin hydration is, at least, in certain body sites, lower in atopic feline patients than in healthy individuals.
The development of in vitro embryo production (IVEP) techniques in Felis catus is a fitting model with potential application to the conservation of endangered felid species. To improve the quality of IVEP techniques an appropriate balance of pro- and antioxidants should be provided. Under in vitro conditions, high levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and catalase (CAT) mRNA provide a defence mechanism against oxidative stress for embryos. In order to improve the development of cat oocytes, the effects of SOD and CAT supplemented to in vitro maturation (IVM) medium and of GPx supplemented to in vitro fertilization (IVF) medium on development and embryo production in vitro were evaluated. Data showed an increase of 70 and 77 % of cleaved embryo and blastocyst formation, respectively, in the experiment with SOD and CAT addition to IVM medium; in the experiment with GPx addition to IVF medium the number of cleaved embryos doubled and the number of embryos increased by 96 %. Therefore, our results were positive and encourage us to continue studies on cat oocytes evaluating the effects of various dosages and combination of antioxidants.