Obesity is a growing epidemic in companion animals. Obesity results from a prolonged positive energy balance leading to excessive fat accumulation, which promotes dysregulation of metabolic, hormonal, and inflammatory responses. Ultimately these changes lead to physical impairment, comorbidities, and reduced quality of life. Evidence is mounting that the intestinal microbiota (collection of microorganisms that live in the intestines) contributes to obesity, and rational manipulation of this ecosystem may confer a health benefit.
This study will provide a comprehensive scientific and clinical assessment of the efficacy of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) as an adjunctive therapy for canine obesity management. The investigators hypothesize that FMT (the transfer of feces from a healthy, lean donor dog into an obese dog) will amplify weight loss in obese dogs compared to the use of standard dietary obesity management. A randomized, placebo controlled clinical trial in client-owned obese dogs consisting of three groups: diet alone, diet + FMT, diet + placebo will provide data on weight loss and characterize the intestinal microbiota and metabolic function. Success of this study will benefit obese dogs by providing a microbial intervention to augment current strategies for canine obesity management aimed at promoting weight loss, normalizing metabolic status, and improving quality of life.
Co-sponsored with the AKC Canine Health Foundation, Grant Number: 2723
Jenessa Winston, DVM, PhD; The Ohio State University