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If your pet has IVDD or recurring urinary tract infections, there are two clinical trials for dogs you should consider. I think veterinary clinical trials are an amazing opportunity for dogs with medical problems or physical disabilities. It gives them the ability to take part in cutting-edge technology, with leading veterinary researchers. It also enables participants to contribute to the future health of other dogs. It’s a pretty good deal all the way around.
If your dog has never participated in a clinical trial, there are other benefits as well. Most studies are free of charge to participants. Typically the only cost you pay is the transportation expense to get your pet to the university and back home. A clinical study also gives your dog the potential opportunity to receive a lifesaving treatment or medication that will extend their life.
It’s easy to find a research study. There are 28 accredited schools of veterinary medicine in the USA and all of them continually conduct clinical trials on every system in a dog’s body. That’s a lot of studies to choose from.
The two trials I’m reviewing in this post, are fascinating. Both are being conducted by professors at UC Davis Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t live nearby; one of the studies wants a mail-in sample.
The first clinical trial is analyzing the effectiveness of a human antibiotic in treating dogs with recurring urinary tract infections. The second study hopes to understand how a genetic component works, in dogs with Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD).
Study title: Comparing anti-microbial therapies for UTIs in dogs
This study is being conducted by Dr. Jodi Westropp, Professor University of California, Davis.
The purpose of the clinical trial
Urinary tract infections are common in dogs and humans. A single dose antibiotic called Fosfomycin is currently being prescribed for women. It’s an antibacterial drug that comes in the form of a powder that’s mixed with water. Doctors prefer prescribing this medicine, because it works well and because the single dose produces fewer side effects than a multi-day medication. The goal of the study is to see whether or not Fosfomycin is “effective and well tolerated” by dogs.
Dr. Westropp is looking for these candidates:
Dogs with a current UTI that causes them to strain when urinating
Canines with an UTI that produces blood in the urine
Dogs who urinate only small amounts
Incontinent dogs who respond to antimicrobial drugs for urinary tract infections
Participants will complete a physical exam where urine and blood samples will be collected. In addition, dogs will undergo an abdominal ultrasound. Participants will receive one dose of Fosfomycin, along with two placebo pills, or they’re receive three doses of another antibiotic. Patients will not know which medication they receive.
Pet owners must agree to keep a daily log for 21 days. There will be 5 daily questions to answer.
Apply to the study
If you’re interested in this study, click here and “Take the survey” to see if you qualify.
Study title: Understanding the genetics causing IVDD in Poodles
This study is headed by Dr. Danika Bannasch, Professor University of California, UC Davis.
Purpose of the trial
It’s been discovered that “chondrodystrophic” dog breeds are prone to Type I Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD). Type I IVDD causes the discs in the spine to age faster than normal and rupture. It’s painful and can result in paralysis.
Chondrodystrophic (CDDY) dogs have short legs and a long body, like Dachshunds, Basset hounds, Beagles, Corgis and English bulldogs.
CDDY is a genetic abnormality that causes the long bones and cartilage in the legs to remain short. The confusing part about dogs with CDDY is that not every canine with the genetic condition, develops IVDD spine disease.
Poodles are particularly interesting because CDDY varies among the breed. There are both tall Poodles and short ones.
Dr. Bannasch thinks this makes the breed the ideal subject to study. The hope is to determine the risk factors for developing IVDD, by looking at a Poodle’s DNA.
UC Davis is looking for any poodle who’s been diagnosed with IVDD and underwent surgery for it. The trial needs 4,000 participants.
The only procedure in this clinical trial is a blood sample for DNA analysis. The sample needs to be taken and submitted by your dog’s veterinarian.
Apply to the study
To get more information, click here and complete the form titled, “I’m interested in this study.”
Want to read more on these subjects?
Intervertebral Disc Disease: Understanding the Condition
Three Key Elements to Stop Dog Urinary Tract Infections