Lessons from a non-domestic canid: joint disease in captive raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides)

Vet Ital. 2012 Oct-Dec;48(4):367-78.


The purpose of this study was to describe pathological changes of the shoulder, elbow, hip and stifle joints of 16 museum skeletons of the raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides). The subjects had been held in long-term captivity and were probably used for fur farming or research, thus allowing sufficient longevity for joint disease to become recognisable. The prevalence of disorders that include osteochondrosis, osteoarthritis and changes compatible with hip dysplasia, was surprisingly high. Other changes that reflect near-normal or mild pathological conditions, including prominent articular margins and mild bony periarticular rim, were also prevalent. Our data form a basis for comparing joint pathology of captive raccoon dogs with other mammals and also suggest that contributing roles of captivity and genetic predisposition should be explored further in non-domestic canids.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Joint Diseases / pathology
  • Joint Diseases / veterinary*
  • Museums
  • Raccoon Dogs*