Main content area

Validating and optimizing spot sampling of urine to estimate urine output with creatinine as a marker in dairy cows

Lee, C., Morris, D.L., Dieter, P.A.
Journal of dairy science 2019 v.102 no.1 pp. 236-245
alfalfa, body weight, corn, creatinine, dairy cows, diurnal variation, excretion, experimental diets, lactating females, lactation, potassium, regression analysis, urine
An experiment was conducted to validate and optimize the procedure of spot urine sampling with urinary creatinine as a marker to estimate urine outputs of dairy cows. Twelve lactating cows were used in a randomized complete block design. Cows were grouped and randomly assigned to 2 experimental diets: a corn silage-based diet and an alfalfa silage-based diet with supplemental potassium. The experiment lasted for 21 d and total collection (TC) of urine was conducted for the last 3 d. Twelve spot samples of urine from individual cows were collected over a 3-d period during TC to represent every 2-h sampling in a 24-h cycle. Creatinine excretion rate (mg/kg of body weight per d) was variable among cows from 16.7 to 34.5 with an average of 27.3. Creatinine concentrations of spot samples within cow were averaged to simulate urine samples obtained from various spot sampling frequencies (equally spaced 12, 6, 4, and 2 time points starting at feeding: 12TP, 6TP, 4TP, and 2TP, respectively). Large diurnal variation of urinary creatinine concentration was observed within cow. Creatinine concentration was greater (75 vs. 65 mg/dL) for 12TP compared with TC, resulting in underestimating (29.8 vs. 32.6 kg/d) urine outputs. When compared among 12TP, 6TP, 4TP, and 2TP, creatinine concentrations were different and urine outputs tended to be different for 2TP compared with 12TP, 6TP, and 4TP. In addition, despite underestimation of urine output, a regression analysis indicated strong linear relationships between 12TP, 6TP, or 4TP and TC, suggesting that this technique can successfully identify the differences in urine outputs altered by dietary treatments. However, 4TP failed to detect statistical differences in urine outputs between a corn silage-based diet and the alfalfa silage-based diet with supplemental potassium, indicating that a spot urine sampling frequency of at least 6 was required to identify dietary effects on urine outputs. According to the pattern of diurnal changes in urinary creatinine concentration, a spot sample at about 10 h after feeding may have potential to obtain a urine sample that is more representative (i.e., creatinine concentration) of TC urine compared with urine from multiple sampling frequencies. Overall, urinary creatinine as a marker with spot sampling of urine underestimated urine output. However, 12TP and 6TP were successful in identifying changes in urine outputs by dietary treatments.