Comparison of forelimb and hindlimb systolic blood pressures and proteinuria in healthy shetland sheepdogs

B. A. Scansen, J. Vitt, D. J. Chew, K. E. Schober, J. D. Bonagura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The prevalence of systemic hypertension (SHT) in Shetland Sheepdogs has not been reported. Hypothesis/Objectives: SHT is common in Shetland Sheepdogs and positively correlated with proteinuria. Measurements of forelimb and hindlimb systolic arterial pressure (SAP) are comparable. Animals: Seventy-two clinically healthy, client-owned Shetland Sheepdogs. Methods: Forelimb and hindlimb SAP were recorded by Doppler ultrasonography. Proteinuria was quantified by urine dipstick, microalbuminuria, and protein:creatinine ratio (UPC). The relationship of UPC, anxiety, age, weight, and heart rate with forelimb SAP was evaluated. Results: The mean forelimb and hindlimb SAP were 132 ± 20 and 118 ± 20 mmHg, respectively. The SAP exceeded 160 mmHg in 9 dogs, suggesting 13% prevalence of SHT. Four dogs had a UPC above 0.5; 2 of these had forelimb SAP exceeding 160 mmHg. Correlation of forelimb and hindlimb SAP was poor (r2 = 0.09; P = .011). Bland-Altman plots revealed substantial bias (-14 mmHg) between limb measurements with clinically unacceptable 95% limits of agreement (-60 to 33 mmHg). There was no correlation between forelimb SAP and UPC (P = .06) or anxiety level (P = .49). Age (P < .0001) and heart rate (P = .038) were significant predictors of forelimb SAP; weight (P = .73) was not. Conclusions: Prevalence of SHT was 13% and not correlated with proteinuria. Forelimb and hindlimb SAP were poorly correlated; therefore, trends in an individual animal should be monitored using the same measurement site. Additionally, values for Doppler SAP were determined in Shetland Sheepdogs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-283
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of veterinary internal medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Doppler ultrasonography
  • Proteinuria
  • Systemic hypertension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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