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Title:Nutritional and Health Consequences of Feeding Diets of Varied Macronutrient Composition and Subjected to Select Processing Conditions in Domestic and Wild Felids
Author(s):Vester, Brittany Marie
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Swanson, Kelly S.
Department / Program:Animal Sciences
Discipline:Animal Sciences
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):Agriculture, Animal Culture and Nutrition
Abstract:This research focused on improving or maintaining domestic and captive exotic felids through nutritional intervention. Five studies were performed to address two primary research objectives: (1) to determine changes in macronutrient digestibilities and fecal fermentative end-products of raw and extruded diets fed to domestic and captive exotic felids; and (2) to measure metabolic and transcriptomic changes in domestic cats fed high-protein or high-carbohydrate kibble diets. Study 1 determined the effects of feeding high-protein kibble diet or beef-based raw diet on total tract nutrient digestibilities and nitrogen metabolism of African wildcats, a close ancestor of domestic cats. Study 2 determined total tract macronutrient digestibilities and fecal fermentative end-product concentrations of five exotic fetid species (bobcats, cheetahs, jaguars, Malayan tigers, and Amur tigers). Study 3 determined the effects of feeding horse- or beef-based raw diets on total tract nutrient digestibilities and fecal characteristics of exotic felids (cheetahs, jaguars, Malayan tigers, and Amur tigers) and domestic cats. Study 4 determined the effects of in utero and postnatal exposure to high-protein or high-carbohydrate diets on adipose tissue gene expression, blood metabolites, and physical activity levels in domestic kittens. Study 5 determined the effects of ovariohysterectomy on body composition, adipose and skeletal muscle gene expression, and physical activity in adult cats fed high-protein or high-carbohydrate diets. Our results indicate that a high-protein kibble diet may serve as an adequate replacement to raw meat diets in some small exotic felids. There are species effects as it pertains to apparent nutrient digestibilities and fecal fermentative end-product concentrations that should be considered when creating captive exotic felid feeding recommendations. High-protein exposure in utero and postnatally increased voluntary physical acitivity and altered adipose tissue gene expression (hormone sensitive lipase, leptin, and insulin receptor). Feeding high-protein diets did not prevent weight gain in our studies, but may be more effective if limit-fed. As high-protein and raw diets gain popularity with consumers, further research designed to determine metabolic changes is needed.
Issue Date:2008
Type:Text
Language:English
Description:229 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2008.
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/83621
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI3347552
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:2008


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