Clinical and pathological findings in a Dwarf Red Brocket Mazama rufina (Mammalia: Cetartiodactyla: Cervidae) attacked by dogs

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Eduardo Alfonso Díaz
Gustavo Donoso
Carolina Sáenz
Ivette Dueñas
Francisco Cabrera


Capture myopathy is a common fatal syndrome in wild ungulates resulting from anthropogenic stressful events such as the capture or transport of specimens.  There are, however, few published data on this issue due to predator attacks.  The present report describes for the first time the capture myopathy syndrome in a Dwarf Red Brocket Mazama rufina following dog Canis familiaris attack.  Clinical signs included pale mucous with increase capillary refill time, tachycardia, tachypnea, hypertension, hypothermia, hypoglycemia, and red brown urine.  Muscle tremors, ataxia, prostration, paralysis, and opisthotonus were progressively observed.  Laboratory tests showed increased levels of cortisol, creatinine, creatine kinase, lactate dehydrogenase, and potassium; decreased blood urea nitrogen-creatinine ratio; and myoglobinuria.  The animal died 72 hours after hospital admission.  At necropsy, findings included injuries on both hindlimbs with edema, emphysema, and soft-friable texture in affected muscles, dark kidneys and brown urine in bladder.  Histopathological exams were indicative of skeletal-cardiac muscle degenerative lesions and myoglobinuric nephrosis.  Immuno-histochemistry revealed myoglobin depletion in degenerate muscles and myoglobin accumulation in renal tissues.  We strongly recommend that treatment for capture myopathy be initiated when a wild ungulate is admitted with history of predator attack, since the syndrome may have already established.  This report adds to the instances of negative impacts caused by domestic dogs on threatened wildlife species. 


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Díaz, E.A., Donoso, G., Sáenz, C., Dueñas, I. and Cabrera, F. 2020. Clinical and pathological findings in a Dwarf Red Brocket Mazama rufina (Mammalia: Cetartiodactyla: Cervidae) attacked by dogs. Journal of Threatened Taxa. 12, 13 (Sep. 2020), 16885–16890. DOI:
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