Equine Chorionic Gonadotropin and Human Chorionic Gonadotropin Stimulation Increase the Number of Luteinized Follicles and the Progesterone Level Compared with Cabergoline Stimulation in Anoestrus Bitches

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In this study, ovarian morphologies and blood progesterone concentrations following oestrous induction in bitches were examined. Fifty-three clinically healthy anoestrus bitches received cabergoline at a daily dose of 5 μg/kg of body weight per os for 21 days (group I) or subcutaneous equine chorionic gonadotropin at a dose of 20 IU/kg of body weight for five consecutive days with an additional 500 IU s.c. per bitch of human chorionic gonadotropin on the last day of treatment (group II). Twenty bitches that spontaneously displayed oestrous signs were left untreated and served as controls (group III). The induced oestrous rates and ovulation rates in groups I and II were 60.0% vs 64.3% and 86.7% vs 83.3%, respectively. Morphological assessments of the ovarian structures after ovariohysterectomy revealed an increase in the number of luteinized follicles and cysts in group II compared with the two other groups (p < 0.001). In contrast, the numbers of corpora lutea and follicles were similar in all groups. In accordance with the above-mentioned alteration, the progesterone concentration in the gonadotropin group (II) was increased (p < 0.001) in the periovulatory period compared with the other two groups. During the entire sampling period, the progesterone profiles in the cabergoline (I) and control (III) groups were similar and typical of normally cycling bitches. In conclusion, gonadotropin treatment is associated with an increased progesterone level during the periovulatory period that probably originates from luteinized follicles, whereas cabergoline treatment induces cycles with both physiological progesterone concentrations and ovarian morphologies.

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