Journal article

Dietary Betaine Impacts the Physiological Responses to Moderate Heat Conditions in a Dose Dependent Manner in Sheep

Kristy DiGiacomo, Sarah Simpson, Brian J Leury, Frank R Dunshea

Animals | MDPI AG | Published : 2016

Abstract

Heat exposure (HE) results in decreased production in ruminant species and betaine is proposed as a dietary mitigation method. Merino ewes ( n = 36, 40 kg, n = 6 per group) were maintained at thermoneutral (TN, n = 18, 21 °C) or cyclical HE ( n = 18, 18-43 °C) conditions for 21 days, and supplemented with either 0 (control), 2 or 4 g betaine/day. Sheep had ad libitum access to water and were pair fed such that intake of sheep on the TN treatment matched that of HE animals. Heart rate (HR), respiration rate (RR), rectal (T R ) and skin temperatures (T S ) were measured 3 times daily (0900 h, 1300 h, 1700 h). Plasma samples were obtained on 8 days for glucose and NEFA analysis. The HE treatmen..

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