Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Cecil L. MeIntire

Second Advisor

Dr. Leonard Beuving

Third Advisor

Dr. Jaime Benitez

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


In 1970, a once very productive Allegan, Michigan dog kennel began experiencing a rash o£ unexplained perinatal deaths and reproductive anomalies in Shetland pups. Anomalies including cleft palate and lip, kinked tails, twisted feet and convulsions immediately before death plagued the neonates. The adult dogs were reported to have tooth mottling, exostoses and auditory and vestibular problems.

Because the dogs had been on high fluoride diets and because the kennel well water was suspected of harboring toxins, a group of 20 Shetland dogs was used to try to find if there was any correlation between the reproductive problems and the high fluoride food and well water.

The research described in this manuscript examines the temporal bones of eight of these Shetland dogs along with six non-Allegan control dogs in an effort to try to explain the reported auditory and vestibular problems at the kennel. It was determined in the present study that the animals from the high fluoride and well water group showed substantially less otopathology than those from the low fluoride and distilled water group.