Haematology and Serum Biochemical Characteristics of California White Rabbits Fed Varying Levels of Dietary Protein

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International Journal of Research and Scientific Innovation (IJRSI) | Volume VI, Issue V, May 2019 | ISSN 2321–2705

Haematology and Serum Biochemical Characteristics of California White Rabbits Fed Varying Levels of Dietary Protein

Unung H.U 1, Oyedapo F.A2, Yakubu, D. P1, Asiruwa P. O and Oshibanjo D.O2*

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1Department of Zoology, Faculty of Natural Science, University of Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria.
2 Department of Animal Production, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria.

Abstract:-A ninety-day feeding trial involving thirty (30) California white breed weaner rabbits was conducted to assess the haematology and serum biochemical profile of the rabbits fed varying levels of dietary protein (DP). The ages of rabbits ranged from 6-8 weeks with an average initial body weight of 1kg±4. Rabbits were randomly assigned to three dietary protein (DP) treatments; 13%, 18% and 14% (control diet) in a completely randomized design. The rabbits were served experimental diets daily while clean drinking water was provided ad-libitum. Standard management practices were strictly adhered to. Blood samples were collected forthnightly through ear vein of the individual rabbits (2mls each) for haematology and serum biochemical assay. Results from haematology and serum biochemical profile indicates that red blood cell and pack cell volume differed significantly (p<0.05) between treatment groups of 13% DP and 18% DP compared to the control group. The results therefore, suggest that protein level in the diet of rabbits at 18% supports high synthesis of both red blood cell and pack cell volume. Similarly, increase in total protein level noticed with rabbits fed 18% dietary protein, confirms the availability of protein in the diet. The cholesterol level of rabbits fed 13% dietary protein as significantly (p<0.05) higher than those on 18%, DP. In conclusion, diets formulated at 13% and18% crude protein levels had no effect on the assessed haematological and serum biochemical parameters, and obtained values were within normal documented ranges, that supports the normal physiological status of California white rabbits or its crosses.

Key words: Haematological parameter, Serum biochemical indices, California white, dietary protein.

I. INTRODUCTION

Commercial rabbit production has been on the increase in recent years. The observed increase have been attributed to the characteristics possessed by rabbits which include; high fecundity, rapid growth rate, small body size and high meat yield. Rabbits can convert 20% of ingested protein as against 17% and 10% for pigs and cattle respectively