Blood vitamins and trace elements in Northern- East African cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus soemmeringii) in captivity in the Middle East

Katie Beckmann, Declan O'Donovan , Sean McKeown, Ulli Wernery, Puja Basu

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Abstract / Description of output

Abstract: There are few published data regarding the endangered Northern-East African cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus soemmeringii), held in captivity in the Middle East and Europe. Studies have demonstrated a high incidence of disease in captive cheetahs, in which vitamin and trace element imbalances have often been implicated. Blood vitamin and trace element reference values in cheetahs merit further investigation. In this study, blood samples were opportunistically collected from apparently healthy A. j. soemmeringii from two collections (A and B) with
successful breeding programs in the United Arab Emirates. The cheetahs were fed whole prey of mixed species (and, in Collection B, goat muscle and bone as well) dusted with vitamin and mineral supplements. Mean serum vitamin and trace element values (for cheetahs . 4 mo in age) were as follows: vitamin A (retinol), 2.20 lM/L (n ¼ 27); vitamin B1, 0.0818 lM/L (n ¼ 45); vitamin C, 28.6 lM/L (n ¼ 10); vitamin E (a-tocopherol), 35.6 lM/L (n ¼ 27); copper (Cu), 12.53 lM/L (n ¼ 27); selenium (Se), 3.10 lM/L (n ¼ 27); and zinc (Zn), 10.87 lM/L (n ¼ 27).Mean values of vitamin A, vitamin E, Cu, and Zn fell within ranges of published cheetah mean values, and mean Se was lower than range values for cheetahs presented in one previous study; blood vitamin B1 and vitamin C
values of cheetahs have not previously been published. The values were taken to indicate that the cheetahs’nutritional status was adequate with regard to those nutrients analyzed. Serum vitamin E was particularly high in cheetahs fed fresh whole prey, and on this basis vitamin E supplementation of fresh whole prey appeared to have been unnecessary. There were differences (P , 0.05) between collections in serum vitamin B1, vitamin E, Cu, and 10 other hematologic and biochemical parameters. Nine hematologic and blood biochemical parameters differed among age categories.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2013


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