1995 年 44 巻 1 号 p. 23-28
This study was conducted to examine the relationship between dietary nitrogen (N)-corrected metabolizable energy (MEn) and dietary digestible energy (DE) in cats, in order to verify the reliability of the present metabolizable energy (ME) system for cats. Four adult female cats were fed diets containing four different levels of crude protein (CP) (24, 35, 49, and 62% as fed) 4 hours a day in a 4 × 4 Latin square design to determine energy-and N-balance. Dietary CP levels had hardly any effect on daily food intake, but acid-ether extract (AEE) intake tended to increase and carbohydrate (CHO) intake tended to decrease, in response to increases in dietary CP levels. Apparent CP and AEE digestibility did not change, regardless of the experimental diet. In contrast, CHO digestibility tended to diminish as dietary CP levels increased. Although the ratio of urinary energy (UE) to urinary N (UN) was higher in cats fed the lowest CP diet, it was still much lower than in other mammals. Regression between UE/digestible crude protein (DCP) and N-balance indicated that dietary ME at N-equilibrium (i.e., MEn) could be expressed as DE -0.47 × DCP. MEn could also be estimated as DE -0.62 × DCP by using the average ratio of UE/(UN × 6.25). Both DCP coefficients were much lower than in other mammals, including dogs and pigs, suggesting a unique form of N metabolism in cats. Because ME values applied to practical feline feed ingredients have been either estimated in pigs or calculated according to the equation, DE -1.25 × DCP, similar to the method used for dogs, the present ME values for cats are believed to have been underestimated.