Reference intervals for hematological and blood biochemistry reference values in healthy mules and hinnies
- 229 Downloads
Little scientific information is known regarding mules and even less is known about hinnies. Due to increased popularity of both as recreational animals which are still commonly found as working equids, there is a need for such basic information for practitioners and owners. The purpose of this study was to begin to establish reference ranges for hematological and biochemical parameters of clinically healthy mules and hinnies compared to those of their sires and dams (horses and donkeys of similar genotype, phenotype within species) used for hybrid offspring production. Such information will contribute to our understanding and attempts to improve management and disease diagnosis of hinnies and mules. Eighty-one healthy equids (n = 30 hinnies, 20 mules, 20 donkeys, and 11 horses) were sampled. Clinical data recorded age, gender, BCS, and temperature. Two 10-mL blood samples were collected by venipuncture of the jugular vein, using “vacutainer” plain and EDTA tubes. These samples were analyzed for RBC, PCV, Hb, WBC, platelets, proteins, fatty acids, electrolytes, enzymes, and glucose. Average and standard deviations were calculated. Kruskal-Wallis test was used to test the significant value. Findings were considered to be significant if P ≤ 0.05. When comparing all parameters among four groups of equids, differences were found for temperature, red blood cell lines, white blood cell lines, electrolytes, and enzymes. Differences in mules and hinnies were seen in RBC, WBC, magnesium, bilirubin, creatinine, and AST. The results are constricted to very few known populations of equid hybrids with similar genetics. In this study, hinnies and mules showed results that were closer to those of horses than those of donkeys. Some differences recorded in hinnies may be related to age: RBC, WBC, MCH, MCV, eosinophils, magnesium, total bilirubin, creatinine, and AST. Findings may help establish new, relevant hematological and biochemical parameters which may prevent medical misdiagnosis. Additional research is needed with larger populations of healthy mules and hinnies.
KeywordsMules Hinnies Donkeys Blood chemistry Hematology
The authors would like to express sincere gratitude and thanks to Dr. Jesus of Toro, Spain, for donating many of the animals used in this study as well as helping identify other owners and clients with equines that were sampled. We would also like to thank all clients in Miranda, Portugal, and Toro, Spain, who were a part of this study.
Compliance with ethical standards
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. All owners/clients agreed to a consent either in written form for Spanish owners or verbal for the Portuguese to allow their animals to be subjected to sampling for this study. Consents were relayed in the appropriate language, Spanish and Portuguese. In addition, the protocol was approved by the North Carolina State University Animal Care and Use Committee (approval #13-039-A).
Conflict of interest
There is no conflict of interest for any of the authors. Author McLean did receive funding from North Carolina State University and a previous institution, University of Wyoming, but the remaining authors had no other funding or conflicts.
Author McLean received two grants, one from the University of Wyoming College of Agriculture Department, Global Perspectives and an International Seed Grant, and funds from her startup package at North Carolina State University Animal Science Program that helped fund this project.
- Ali R, Anmjum AD (1998) Rectal temperature, pulse rate and breath rate in mules. Pakistan J Biol Sci 1–4:271–273, http://docsdrive.com/pdfs/ansinet/pjbs/1998/271273.pdf
- Brown DG, Cross FH (1969) Hematologic values of burros from birth to maturity: cellular elements of peripheral blood. Am J of Vet Res 30:1921–1927, http://agris.fao.org/agrissearch/search.do?recordID=US201301219150
- Burden, FA, Hazell-Smith, E, Mulugeta, G, et al. (2015) Reference intervals for biochemical and haemtological parameters in mature domestic donkeys (Equus asinus) in the UK. Equine Vet Ed: 1–6. doi: 10.1111/eve.12512
- Courouce-Malblanc A, Fortier G, Moulin M, et al. (2008) Reference values on hematologic and biochemical parameters in French donkeys. In: Proceedings of the 10th International Congress of World Equine Veterinary Association: 458 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/eve.12512/full
- De Aluja AS, Mondragon VRL, Castillo M DA, et al. (2003) Hematological and biochemical reference values in the donkey (Equus asinus) in Mexico. In: Matthews NS, Taylor TS, eds Veterinary care of donkeys. Ithaca, NY: International Veterinary Information Service. Available at: www.ivis.org. Accessed 1, February 2013.
- Grondin TM, Dewitt SF (2010) Normal hematology of the horse and donkey. In: Schalm’s veterinary hematology, 6th edn. Wiley-Blackwell, Hoboken, NJ, pp 821–828Google Scholar
- Gul ST, Ahmad M, Khan A et al (2007) Haemato-biochemical observations in apparently healthy equine. Pak Vet J 27:155–9.1, http://pvj.com.pk/pdffiles/27_4/155158.pdf
- Jackson LA (2004) The mule men: a history of stock packing in the Sierra Nevada. Mountain Press Publishing Co, Missoula, MT, pp 1–5Google Scholar
- Jordana J, Folch P, Cuenca R (1998) Clinical biochemical parameters of the endangered Catalonian donkey breed: normal values and the influence of sex, age, and management practices. Research in Vet Sci 64:7–10 doi.org/10.1016/S00345288(98)90107-2.Google Scholar
- Kugler W, Grunenfelder HP, Broxham, E (2008) Donkey breeds in Europe: inventory, description, need for action, conservation—report 2008. St. Gallen, Monitoring Institute for Rare Breeds and Seeds in Europe, http://www.monitoring.eu.com
- McLean, AK, Wang W (2013) Pilot study comparing hematologic and serum biochemical parameters in healthy horses (Equus caballus) and mules. Proceedings. Equine Science Society Symposium, Jrnl. of Equine Vet Sci 33–5; 352–354. doi: 10.1016/j.jevs.2013.03.079
- Mori E, Mirnadola RMS, Ferreira R et al. (2004) Reference values on hematologic parameters of the Brazilian donkey (Equus asinus) breed. Vet Review 24–7: 271–276 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jevs.2004.06.008.
- Piccone G, Assenza A, Costa A (2003) Daily rhythm of body temperature and some haematochemical parameters in donkey. Slov Vet Res: 40 http://arnika.mf.unilj.si/cgibin/bsn/neva.exe?name=bs_cx_en&expressioncardiac,tissue&hs=1501.
- Zinkl JG, Mae D, Merida PD et al (1997) Reference ranges and the influence of age and sex on hematologic and serum biochemical values in donkeys (Equus asinus). Am J Vet Res 51:408–413, https://www.soas.ac.uk/history/conferences/donkey-conference/file96347.pdf