The aim of this study was to establish heart rate as a measure of energy expenditure in large active kennel dogs.

The heart rate–oxygen consumption relationship was analyzed in Foxhound-Boxer-Ingelheim-Labrador cross-breeds at rest and graded levels of exercise on a treadmill up to 60–65% of maximal aerobic capacity. To test for effects of training, heart rate and inline image were measured in female dogs, before and after a training period, and after an adjacent training pause to test for reversibility of potential effects. Least squares regression was applied to describe the relationship between heart rate and inline image. The applied training had no statistically significant effect on the heart rate–inline image regression. A general regression line from all data collected was prepared to establish a general predictive equation for energy expenditure from heart rate in the dogs.

The regression equation established in this study enables fast estimation of energy requirement for running activity. The equation is valid for large dogs weighing around 30 kg that run at ground level up to 15 km/h with a heart rate maximum of 190 bpm irrespective of the training level.

Source: N. Gerth et al., 2015. Using heart rate to predict energy expenditure in large domestic dogs. JAPAN online, September 2015. doi: 10.1111/jpn.12391