Case Description—A 16-year-old vasectomized male ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta) with a history of suspected chronic renal failure was evaluated because of extreme lethargy, hyperpnea, and abscess of the right pectoral scent gland.
Clinical Findings—Examination of the anesthetized patient revealed an impacted right pectoral scent gland with serosanguineous exudate. A CBC and serum biochemical analysis revealed severe anemia, marked azotemia, hyperphosphatemia, and hypocalcemia.
Treatment and Outcome—Supportive care (including fluid therapy and phosphorus binder administration) was initiated for renal failure; the affected gland was cleaned, and antimicrobials were administered. The patient received 1 blood transfusion, and darbepoetin alfa was administered weekly to stimulate RBC production. Anemia and azotemia persisted. Three months after treatment started, serum iron analysis revealed that iron deficiency was the probable cause for the lack of a consistent regenerative response to darbepoetin injections. Iron dextran injections resulted in a marked regenerative response; however, serum biochemical analysis results after the second injection were consistent with hepatic injury. Hepatic enzyme activities normalized following discontinuation of iron dextran treatment, but the lemur's Hct declined rapidly despite supplementary iron administration PO. The patient developed severe mandibular osteomyelitis and was euthanized because of poor prognosis. Postmortem evaluation of hepatic iron concentration confirmed iron deficiency.
Clinical Relevance—The family Lemuridae is considered prone to hemosiderosis and hemochromatosis, which delayed rapid diagnosis and treatment of the lemur's disease. Apparent hepatic injury following iron dextran injections further complicated treatment. Findings for this lemur support the use of species-specific total iron binding capacity and total serum iron and ferritin concentrations in evaluation of an animal with suspected iron deficiency.
OBJECTIVE To describe ultrasonographic characteristics of the reproductive tract and serum progesterone and estradiol concentrations in captive female red wolves (Canis rufus) with and without reproductive tract disease.
DESIGN Prospective study.
ANIMALS 13 adult female red wolves.
PROCEDURES Wolves with varying parity and history of contraceptive treatment were anesthetized to facilitate ultrasonographic examination and measurement of the reproductive tract and blood collection for determination of serum progesterone and estradiol concentrations in December 2011 and June 2012. Additionally, during the December evaluation, fine-needle aspirate samples of the uterus were obtained for cytologic evaluation. Measurements were compared between wolves with and without reproductive tract disease and between wolves that had and had not received a contraceptive.
RESULTS 7 of 13 wolves had or developed reproductive tract disease during the study. Ranges for measurements of reproductive tract structures overlapped between ultrasonographically normal and abnormal tracts, but measurements for abnormal tracts were generally greater than those for normal tracts. The ultrasonographic diagnosis was consistent with the histologic diagnosis for reproductive tracts obtained from wolves that were sterilized, were euthanized, or died during the study. Cytologic results for fine-needle aspirate samples of the uterus and serum progesterone and estradiol concentrations were unable to distinguish wolves with and without reproductive tract disease. Reproductive tract disease was not associated with parity or contraceptive administration.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE The ultrasonographic images, reproductive tract measurements, and descriptions of reproductive tract lesions provided in this study can be used as diagnostic guidelines for the treatment and management of red wolves with reproductive tract disease.
CASE DESCRIPTION 10 large felids at 8 facilities were determined or suspected to have developed gastric dilatation with or without enterotoxemia over a 20-year period. Four felids were found dead with no premonitory signs.
CLINICAL FINDINGS 4 felids (2 male snow leopards [Uncia uncia], 1 male Amur tiger [Panthera tigris altaica], and 1 male Sumatran tiger [Panthera tigris sumatrae]) were found dead or died before they could be evaluated. Six felids had hematemesis (1 male and 1 female African lion [Panthera leo] and 1 male jaguar [Panthera onca]) or abdominal distention and signs of lethargy with or without vomiting (1 male African lion, 1 male Malayan tiger [Panthera tigris jacksoni], and 1 female Sumatran tiger). Gastric dilatation was radiographically and surgically confirmed in the male Malayan and female Sumatran tigers and the jaguar.
TREATMENT AND OUTCOME In 3 felids with an antemortem diagnosis, the gastric dilatation resolved with decompressive laparotomy but then recurred in 1 felid, which subsequently died. Three others died at various points during hospitalization. Although Clostridium perfringens type A was recovered from 3 of the 5 felids for which microbial culture was performed, and 2 felids had a recent increase in the amount fed, no single factor was definitively identified that might have incited or contributed to the gastric dilatation.
CLINICAL RELEVANCE Gastric dilatation was a life-threatening condition in the large felids of this report, causing sudden death or clinical signs of hematemesis, abdominal distention, or vomiting. Even with rapid diagnosis and surgical decompression, the prognosis was poor. Research is needed into the factors that contribute to this emergent condition in large felids so that preventive measures might be taken.