The prevalence of chronic renal disease is substantial among captive cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus). The purpose of this study was to determine kidney measurements from radiographs of captive cheetahs (n = 15) with normal renal function. The ratio of kidney length to length of the body of the second lumbar vertebrae has been established for domestic cats with normal renal function. The mean ratio of renal length to length of the second lumbar vertebra was 1.81 ± 0.14 in cheetahs. This baseline data may allow an objective evaluation of radiographic kidney size in cheetahs. However, evaluation of a small number of cheetahs with confirmed renal failure resulted in a similar ratio.
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Vol. 36 • No. 2