Canines born in summer prone to heart disease: study

May 17, 2018
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Dogs born during summer months run a higher risk of heart and artery problems, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Scientific Reports.

The seasonal difference was especially marked—74 percent higher in July than January—in breeds not genetically prone to cardiovascular disease, leading scientists to speculate that environmental factors such as accounted for the added summertime risk.

"This finding is significant because the canine heart is a remarkably similar model to the human cardiovascular system," said lead author Mary Regina Boland, an assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania.

The fact that humans and dogs live together and are exposed to the same environmental impacts point to a common source for the heightened seasonal risk, she told AFP.

In earlier research, Boland's team—examining health data for 10.5 million people in three countries—found that persons exposed in the womb to summer air pollution during the first-trimester of pregnancy had a nine percent higher chance of experiencing as adults.

"Taken together, this study and the prior study in humans support the theory that early gestational exposure to fine air particles increases the risk of cardiovascular problems later in life," she said.

For the new study, researchers combed through cardiovascular data for 129,778 dogs from more than 250 breeds.

The breeds not genetically susceptible that wound up with heart in summer included the Norfolk terrier, Berger Picard, English toy spaniel, Border terrier and Havanese.

More generally, the percentage of dogs with range from half-a-percent or less—including retrievers, pointers, bulldogs, dobermans, pugs and chihuahuas—to nearly two percent for hounds, collies and sheepdogs.

A 2015 study that compared 1,688 diseases with for 1.75 million patients treated in New York City found that 55 diseases had a statistically significant link with birth month.

Rates of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), asthma, as well as reproductive and respiratory diseases were higher from October to December, the study found.

Explore further: Global birth season study links environment with disease risk

More information: Mary Regina Boland et al, Cardiovascular Disease Risk Varies by Birth Month in Canines, Scientific Reports (2018). DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-25199-w

Related Stories

Global birth season study links environment with disease risk

November 14, 2017

Studies have shown that babies born in winter tend to have a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes at some point, while fall babies have a greater lifetime risk of depression. What might explain these curious connections? ...

French bulldogs at risk of various health problems

May 2, 2018

French Bulldogs, predicted soon to become the most popular dog breed in the UK, are vulnerable to a number of health conditions, according to a new study published in the open access journal Canine Genetics and Epidemiology.

Recommended for you

Complete world map of tree diversity

February 21, 2019

Biodiversity is one of Earth's most precious resources. However, for most places in the world, scientists only have a tiny picture of what this diversity actually is. Researchers at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity ...

'Butterfly-shaped' palladium subnano cluster built in 3-D

February 21, 2019

Miniaturization is the watchword of progress. Nanoscience, studying structures on the scale of a few atoms, has been at the forefront of chemistry for some time now. Recently, researchers at the University of Tokyo developed ...

Water is more homogeneous than expected

February 21, 2019

In order to explain the known anomalies in water, some researchers assume that water consists of a mixture of two phases, even under ambient conditions. However, new X-ray spectroscopic analyses at BESSY II, ESRF and Swiss ...

Squid could provide an eco-friendly alternative to plastics

February 21, 2019

The remarkable properties of a recently-discovered squid protein could revolutionize materials in a way that would be unattainable with conventional plastic, finds a review published in Frontiers in Chemistry. Originating ...

Female golden snub-nosed monkeys share nursing of young

February 21, 2019

An international team of researchers including The University of Western Australia and China's Central South University of Forestry and Technology has discovered that female golden snub-nosed monkeys in China are happy to ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.