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Effect of caecotrophy on protein and amino acid metabolism of angora rabbits






Acta Veterinaria Hungarica 33(1-2): 51-57

Effect of caecotrophy on protein and amino acid metabolism of angora rabbits

Experiments were conducted with angora rabbits to determine how the consumption of high- and low-protein diets and prevention of caecotrophy influenced the protein and amino acid metabolism. Caecotrophy was prevented by a plastic collar. The daily feed consumption and the quantity of excreted faeces were weighed, and the nitrogen and amino acid contents of the collected faeces were determined. The protein, amino acid and urea concentrations were determined in blood samples taken from the rabbits. The faecal analyses revealed that, in addition to the protein content of the feed, prevention of caecotrophy also influenced the nitrogen and amino acid excretion. In the control animals kept as usual 75 to 81%, whereas in the collar-wearing (experimental) rabbits about 67 to 71%, of the total N excreted in the faeces was amino acid nitrogen. In the control animals, the quantity of excreted amino acids calculated for identical faecal N amounts (mg amino acid/g N) exceeded that found for the experimental animals by 12.5% in both experiments. (A and B). When feeding low-protein diets, the majority of the excreted amino acids consisted of non-essential, while for high protein diets of essential, amino acids. The results of blood analyses suggest that the quantity of amino acids in the blood plasma can be an indicator of the animals' amino-acid supply status. The significantly better blood parameters (protein, total amino acid N, urea) obtained for the control rabbits practising caecotrophy and fed a low-protein diet (C rabbits) indicate a higher protein and amino acid utilization. In rabbits fed a diet of higher protein content, the effect of caecotrophy was not significant.

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Accession: 001342838

PMID: 2940829



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