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Anna-Kate Shoveller


Position/Title: Assistant Professor
email: ashovell@uoguelph.ca
Phone: (519) 824-4120 ext. 53140
Office: ANNU 240

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Meet Kate ( 60 second OAC  video )

While she was always interested in animals, Kate only discovered her love for nutrition in her senior year of her animal biology degree at the University of Guelph. She subsequently joined the research team of Drs. Ron Ball and Paul Pencharz at the University of Alberta. After her PhD she spent eight months as the Provincial Equine Specialist for Alberta and then returned to Guelph for a post doctoral fellowship in Companion Animal Nutrition. She then spent eight years in the USA working for Procter & Gamble and then Mars. In 2015 she joined the University of Guelph as a faculty member and focuses her research on energy and amino acid metabolism in mono-gastric animals (primarily cats, dogs and pigs). She looks at how diet interacts with the animal and its environment and hopes to lead to companion animals living a longer, healthier life style.

Academic History

  • B.Sc. Honours, in Animal Biology, University of Guelph (1997)
  • Ph.D. Nutrition and Metabolism, University of Alberta (2004)
  • Post-doctoral Fellow in Animal Nutrition and Metabolism, University of Guelph (2004-2007)

Affiliations and Partnerships

  • Chair, Companion Animal Committee, American Society of Animal Sciences
  • Section Editor, Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism, NRC Press
  • Member of University of Guelph Animal Care Committee
  • Member of University of Guelph Senate
  • Member of American Society of Nutrition and Experimental Animal Nutrition Committees
  • Member of Canadian Nutrition Society
  • The IAMS Company, Mars Pet Care
  • Trouw Pet Nutrition
  • Champion Pet Foods
  • Kent Pet Group
  • Simmons Pet

Research Impact

Kate worked in the pet food industry from 2007 to 2015 helping to develop foods with better availability of protein and energy. In industry she led and managed scientific investigations and communicated scientific results to better the lives of companion animals through the improvement of the products they eat. Her expert advice on protein and energy metabolism, effects of nutrition on behavior, and effects of nutrition on performance enhanced various products consumed by companion animals across North America.  

Her current research provides information for feed manufacturers and for others who work with animals to improve the health and welfare of pets and livestock.  Kate also works with sled dogs and service dogs to improve their health and nutrition.

She holds the following patents / patent applications:

  • Compositions comprising a glucose anti-metabolite and selenium, United States Patent Application 20120282373 A1. Also published as WO2012151227A1. Filing date 05.02.2011.
  • Edible Composition with Reduced Glycemic Index. United States Patent Application 61/814,246. Filing date 04.20.13.
  • Mimicking the metabolic effects of caloric restriction by administration of glucose anti-metabolites to enhance positive response in a mammal.  European Patent Application 13168825.1-1464. CM 3853. Filing date: 23.05.13
  • Petfood compositions, United States Patent Application 62199802 A1. Filing date 07.31.2015.

Current Research Projects

  • Mineral digestibility in plant and animal based dog foods This project is funded by Champion Pet Foods and MITACs
  • Which types of litter do cats prefer? This project is funded by Kent Pet Foods.
  • What are the components of energy metabolism in cats?
  • How does the variability of Vitamin D in fish affect the levels in pet foods and how can high Vitamin D foods be effectively identified? This project is supported by Simmons Pet Food.
  • Does having a pet contribute to or benefit the overall health of a family? This research is being done in conjunction with the Guelph Family Health study.
  • Habits and practices of the sled dog industry (submitted and under scientific review)
  • Habits and practices of service dog raisers

Graduate Student Information

When working with graduate students, Kate aspires to help her students learn quickly, be willing to accept criticism, accomplish work of extremely high quality and push the envelope. Her lab is known to be high capacity and high energy but also a place where people have a lot of fun.

Kate’s students have gone on to positions in the animal nutrition industry and currently she has former PhD students at Elmira Pet Food, Simmons Pet Food, Mars Pet Care and Trouw Nutrition.

Featured Publications

  1. Marinangeli CPF, Foisy S, Shoveller AK, Jenkins D, Anderson H. 2017. An appetite for modernizing the regulatory framework for protein content claims in Canada. Nutrients. 9(9): 921-948. Doi: 10.3390/nu909092
  2. Shoveller AK, Danelon JJ, Atkinson JL, Davenport GM, Ball RO, Pencharz PB. 2017. Calibration and validation of a carbon oxidation system, determination of the bicarbonate retention factor, and the dietary phenylalanine requirement, in the presence of excess tyrosine, of adult, female, mixed breed dogs. 95: 1-11. DOI: 10.2527/jas2017-1525.
  3. Bellows J, Center S, Daristotle L, Estrada A, Flickinger EA, Horwitz DF, Lepine A, Perea S, Scherk M, Shoveller AK. 2016. Evaluating aging in cats: How to determine what is healthy and what is disease. Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery.
  4. Shoveller AK, Stoll B, Ball RO, Burrin DG. 2005. Nutritional and functional importance of intestinal sulfur amino acid metabolism. Journal of Nutrition. 135(7):1609-12.
  5. Shoveller AK, de Godoy MRC, Larsen J, Flickinger E. 2016. Emerging advancements in canine and feline metabolism and nutrition. World Scientific Journal. http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/9023781.
  6. McKnight LL, Wright D, Root-McCaig J, France J, Shoveller AK. 2015. Dietary mannoheptulose decreases diet induced thermogenesis and physical activity in adult Labrador Retrievers. PLOS One, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0143324.
  7. Gooding MA, Atkinson JA, Duncan IJH, Neil L, Shoveller AK. 2015. Dietary fat and carbohydrate have differential effects on body weight, energy expenditure, glucose homeostasis and behavior in adult cats fed to maintenance energy requirement. Journal of Nutritional Science. doi: 10.1017/jns.2014.60.