October 01, 2020

Interpretive Summary: Lysine requirements in small, medium, and large breed adult dogs

Interpretive Summary: Lysine requirements in small, medium, and large breed adult dogs

By: Anne Kamiya, MS

Essential amino acids (AA) must be provided through diet because they cannot be produced within the body. Lysine (Lys) is one such essential AA in dogs. To date, most studies on canine daily Lys requirements have focused on young Beagles and may not be broadly applicable to adult dogs of different sizes and breeds. Daily Lys requirements for adult dogs of different breeds is unfortunately an area that is currently not well understood. In this recent Translational Animal Science study, researchers evaluated the Lys requirements for three breeds of adult dogs using the indicator AA oxidation (IAAO) technique. They hypothesized that different breeds of dogs would have different Lys requirements, which would also differ from current National Research Council (NRC) recommendations.

Miniature Dachshunds (small breed), Beagles (medium breed) and Labrador Retrievers (large breed) were fed diets deficient in Lys followed by diets supplemented with Lys at feed concentrations ranging from 0.36% to 0.62%. Minimum Lys requirement could not be determined for Miniature Dachshunds, because their needs fell below the lowest concentration used in this study. The Lys requirement for both Labrador Retrievers and Beagles was 0.44% (on a dry matter basis), which was higher than NRC recommendations.

Overall, this study’s results suggest that adult dogs may have different Lys requirements. Whether these differences are due to breed type or size is yet to be determined. Since few animals were used in this study (13 dogs total), larger and more comprehensive studies are needed. The over-supplementation of Lys in feed is not cost effective, so expanded studies that aim to determine the Lys requirements for adult dogs of different breeds and sizes is a valuable area of future study. 

The original article, Lysine requirements in small, medium, and large breed adult dogs using the indicator amino acid oxidation technique, is viewable in Translational Animal Science.