Experiments were performed to determine the effects of packing (load carrying) on erythrocyte osmotic fragility and serum malondialdehyde concentrations in the one-humped camel (Camelus dromedarius) in the semi-arid zone of Nigeria. Experimental camels (n = 8) were packed with grains of 200 kg, while control camels (n = 4) were only trekked without packing. There was increase in erythrocyte osmotic fragility after packing and values obtained were higher than those of control group (95 ± 7.85 % and 84 ± 2.12 % respectively at 0.1 % concentration of NaCl). Serum concentration of malondialdehyde increased after packing from 1.83 ± 0.06 to 2.32 ± 0.08 nMol/ml in the experimental group. In conclusion, load carrying increased erythrocyte osmotic fragility and malondialdehyde concentration in camels. The administration of antioxidant may be beneficial in ameliorating the risk of stress due to packing.
Key Words: Packing, Camel, Erythrocyte osmotic fragility, Malondialdehyde