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Weight loss and high-protein, high-fiber diet consumption impact blood metabolite profiles, body composition, voluntary physical activity, fecal microbiota, and fecal metabolites of adult dogs
Journal of Animal Science  (IF3.159),  Pub Date : 2021-12-30, DOI: 10.1093/jas/skab379
Thunyaporn Phungviwatnikul, Anne H Lee, Sara E Belchik, Jan S Suchodolski, Kelly S Swanson

Canine obesity is associated with reduced lifespan and metabolic dysfunction, but can be managed by dietary intervention. This study aimed to determine the effects of restricted feeding of a high-protein, high-fiber (HPHF) diet and weight loss on body composition, physical activity, blood metabolites, and fecal microbiota and metabolites of overweight dogs. Twelve spayed female dogs (age: 5.5 ± 1.1 yr; body weight [BW]: 14.8 ± 2.0 kg, body condition score [BCS]: 7.9 ± 0.8) were fed a HPHF diet during a 4-wk baseline phase to maintain BW. After baseline (week 0), dogs were first fed 80% of baseline intake and then adjusted to target 1.5% weekly weight loss for 24 wk. Body composition using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and blood samples (weeks 0, 6, 12, 18, and 24), voluntary physical activity (weeks 0, 7, 15, and 23), and fresh fecal samples for microbiota and metabolite analysis (weeks 0, 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, and 24) were measured over time. Microbiota data were analyzed using QIIME 2. All data were analyzed statistically over time using SAS 9.4. After 24 wk, dogs lost 31.2% of initial BW and had 1.43 ± 0.73% weight loss per week. BCS decreased (P < 0.0001) by 2.7 units, fat mass decreased (P < 0.0001) by 3.1 kg, and fat percentage decreased (P < 0.0001) by 11.7% with weight loss. Many serum metabolites and hormones were altered, with triglycerides, leptin, insulin, C-reactive protein, and interleukin-6 decreasing (P < 0.05) with weight loss. Relative abundances of fecal Bifidobacterium, Coriobacteriaceae UCG-002, undefined Muribaculaceae, Allobaculum, Eubacterium, Lachnospira, Negativivibacillus, Ruminococcus gauvreauii group, uncultured Erysipelotrichaceae, and Parasutterella increased (P < 0.05), whereas Prevotellaceae Ga6A1 group, Catenibacterium, Erysipelatoclostridium, Fusobacterium, Holdemanella, Lachnoclostridium, Lactobacillus, Megamonas, Peptoclostridium, Ruminococcus gnavus group, and Streptococcus decreased (P < 0.01) with weight loss. Despite the number of significant changes, a state of dysbiosis was not observed in overweight dogs. Fecal ammonia and secondary bile acids decreased, whereas fecal valerate increased with weight loss. Several correlations between gut microbial taxa and biological parameters were observed. Our results suggest that restricted feeding of a HPHF diet and weight loss promotes fat mass loss, minimizes lean mass loss, reduces inflammatory marker and triglyceride concentrations, and modulates fecal microbiota phylogeny and activity in overweight dogs.