Influence of sex, reproductive status and foetal number on erythrocyte osmotic fragility, haematological and physiologic parameters in goats during the hot-dry season

https://doi.org/10.17221/7778-VETMEDCitation:Habibu B., Kawu M., Makun H., Aluwong T., Yaqub L., Ahmad M., Tauheed M., Buhari H. (2014): Influence of sex, reproductive status and foetal number on erythrocyte osmotic fragility, haematological and physiologic parameters in goats during the hot-dry season. Veterinarni Medicina, 59: 479-490.
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The current study was aimed at evaluating the effect of heat stress (during the hot-dry period) on some physiological variables, haematology and erythrocyte osmotic fragility (EOF) in bucks, pregnant (single and twin) and lactating Red Sokoto (RS) goats. Forty apparently healthy adult goats were used for the study and were allotted to four groups [bucks (n = 10), pregnant (n = 10) dry (n = 10), and lactating (n = 10) does]. The pregnant goats were further re-grouped according to number of foetuses (single foetus, n = 5 and twins, n = 5). The temperature-humidity index and physiological variables measured were significantly higher in the afternoon compared to morning hours. Pregnant does had higher respiratory and pulse rates than the dry does, but no significant change (P > 0.05) in rectal temperature was observed between groups. On the basis of sex, bucks had lower (P < 0.05) mean corpuscular volume (MCV) than other groups, in addition to having higher (P < 0.01) mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH) and total leucocyte counts than dry does. Pregnant does exhibited significantly lower (P < 0.05) packed cell volume, but significantly higher (P < 0.05) MCH and mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentrations (MCHC) than lactating does. Does with a single foetus had significantly lower (P < 0.05) MCV, but higher MCHC than does with twin pregnancies. Using EOF as a biomarker of oxidative stress, erythrocytes of bucks were significantly more resistant to hypotonic haemolysis than those of dry, pregnant and lactating does, with no significant difference in EOF between does of different groups. The erythrocytes of single and twin pregnancies showed similar haemolysis pattern. In conclusion, sex, lactation, and the number of foetuses carried by pregnant does significantly influences physiological and haematological variables in RS goats during the hot-dry season. Also, during heat stress, the changes in physiological variables seem to enhance favourable adaptation by preventing an increase in rectal temperature even in twin pregnancies.  
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