Comparison of temporospatial and kinetic variables of walking in small and large dogs on a pressure-sensing walkway.

Kim J, Kazmierczak KA, Breur GJ.
2011 Sep

Objective-To compare temporospatial variables (TSVs) and kinetic variables (KVs) for fore-limbs and hind limbs of small and large dogs of various breeds during walking and to determine associations among body weight (BW), TSVs, and KVs in these groups. Animals-12 adult dogs with no evidence of lameness. Procedures-Dogs (grouped according to BW as small [< 10 kg; n = 6] or large [> 25 kg; 6]) were walked in a straight line at their preferred velocity on a wooden platform with an embedded pressure-sensing walkway. Five valid trials were analyzed for each dog; mean TSVs and KVs were determined for each group. The TSVs and KVs for forelimbs and hind limbs were compared between groups, and correlations among BW, TSVs, and KVs were determined. Results-Small dogs had significantly smaller TSVs and KVs than did large dogs. Temporal variables of small dogs and absolute vertical force variables of small and large dogs increased as BW increased. However, normalized peak vertical force and weight distribution values among the 4 limbs were similar between groups. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance-Substantial similarities and differences were detected in gait characteristics between small and large dogs. Results indicated TSVs and KVs can be used for comparison of the walking gait between dogs or for comparison of variables between limbs in an individual dog. Use of the pressure-sensing walkway is a simple method for acquisition of TSVs and KVs for large and small dogs.