The aim of this investigation was to evaluate the effects of a structured exercise programme in sedentary dogs with chronic diarrhoea. Twenty-two dogs were enrolled in the study. All dogs received oral prednisolone (1 mg/kg/day for 14 days, followed by a tapering dosage) for 10 weeks. After four weeks of prednisolone treatment, dogs were assigned to either the exercise or control group (n=11 each). Owners of dogs in the exercise group were instructed to guide their dogs in structured exercise training (low-intensity to moderate-intensity aerobic and resistance exercise three to five days per week). After 10 weeks of prednisolone treatment with concomitant 6 weeks of complementary exercise, the Canine Inflammatory Bowel Disease Activity Index (CIBDAI) score had decreased significantly in the exercise group (from 8.8±1.5 at the start of the exercise programme to 2.4±1.5; P<0.001); no such change was observed in the control group (from 9.2±0.9 to 9.2±1.1). CIBDAI scores differed significantly between the groups at the end of the 10-week study period (P<0.001). The exercise programme affected all six CIBDAI parameters significantly; bodyweight (P<0.001, adjusted r2=0.722) was most affected. A structured exercise programme may have positive effects on clinical symptoms in sedentary dogs with chronic diarrhoea.
- chronic enteropathy