This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Effect of Omega 3, 6 and 9 Fatty Acids and Vitamin E on Canine Semen Concentration, Motility, Morphology and Cryopreservation




Barstow, Carla

Type of Degree

Master's Thesis


General Veterinary Medicine


There are few studies in dogs investigating the efficacy of male fertility supplements, most notably fatty acids. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of a commercial fatty acid supplement (OM3 Gold 1000; Spectrum Veterinary; Phoenix, Arizona), on canine semen quality parameters and cryopreservation survivability. Each capsule contained 144 mg linoleic acid, 500 mg alpha-linolenic acid, 203 mg oleic acid and 20 IU vitamin E. Dogs were assigned to either the treatment (n=8) or control group (n=4). All treatment dogs received one capsule of the supplement twice daily for 8 weeks. Ejaculates were collected prior to initiation of treatment then every two weeks for 8 weeks. Ejaculates were cryopreserved at time zero and 8 weeks and post-thaw motility was assessed. The treatment group was then further subdivided into normal dogs (n=4) and sub-fertile dogs (n=4) based upon initial post thaw motilities being greater or less than 30%, respectively. After 8 weeks, sub-fertile treated dogs had an average post thaw motility that increased from 19% to 51% (P = 0.043). Average post thaw motility for normal treated dogs changed from 52% to 58% (P = 0.55) and control dogs from 45% to 53% (P = 0.51). Fatty acid analysis via gas chromatography was performed on the serum and frozen thawed semen initially and 8 weeks after treatment. In all treatment dogs, there was a decrease of omega-6 linoleic acid (P = 0.013) in the serum compared to controls. No change was detected in fatty acid concentrations in frozen thawed semen samples. In summary, supplementation with a fatty acid supplement may help improve post-thaw motility and decrease the concentration of pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids.