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Objective

To determine resting rectal temperatures of Vietnamese potbellied pigs.

Design

Prospective clinical trial.

Animals

85 potbellied pigs on a single farm and 27 potbellied pigs examined at a veterinary teaching hospital for routine veterinary care.

Procedure

Rectal temperatures of the potbellied pigs on a farm were measured during the morning, afternoon, and evening. Rectal temperatures at the time of initial examination were obtained from medical records for the potbellied pigs examined at the hospital.

Results

Mean rectal temperatures for both groups of potbellied pigs were the same. Overall unadjusted mean ± SD rectal temperature was 37.6 ± 0.8 C (99.7 ± 1.5 F; range, 35.1 to 39.6 C [95.2 to 103.3 F]). However, diurnal variation in rectal temperature was found among the farm population of potbellied pigs. After adjustment for age and repeated sampling, rectal temperatures recorded during the morning were found to be significantly lower than temperatures recorded during the afternoon and evening (mean difference, 0.5 and 0.9 C [0.9 and 1.6 F], respectively), and rectal temperatures recorded during the afternoon were found to be significantly lower than temperatures recorded during the evening (mean difference, 0.4 C [0.7 F]). There was a significant inverse linear relationship between age and rectal temperature.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

Rectal temperatures of Vietnamese potbellied pigs may be lower than the lower limit of the reference range reported for domestic pigs. Because of diurnal variation in rectal temperatures, it is important to compare temperatures obtained at the same time of day when assessing patients. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;215:342–344)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association