Background: Cerdocyon thous is the canid with the greatest geographical coverage in South America. The aim of this study was to describe the origin, skeletopy, length and main branches of the coeliac artery in C. thous.
Materials and methods: The dissections were performed on 14 cadavers of adult specimens, 6 males and 8 females, with a rostrosacral length average of 67.00 ± 4.7 cm and 62.09 ± 5.7 cm, respectively. The specimens were collected dead on highways on the banks of the Atlantic Forest (Rio de Janeiro) and the Pampa biome (Rio Grande do Sul) in Brazil. The cadavers were fixed and preserved in a formaldehyde solution until dissection. The coeliac artery was dissected, the length was measured "in situ" and its main branches were recorded. The coeliac artery emerged as a single artery in all dissected animals.
Results: The average length of the coeliac artery was 1.43 ± 0.17 cm in males and 1.39 mm ± 0.24 cm in females, with no significant difference in this measurement between sexes. The predominant skeletopy was at the level of the second lumbar vertebra (57.1%), positioned on average 1.43 cm cranially to the cranial mesenteric artery. In most individuals (92.9%), the classic trifurcation was formed: the coeliac artery branched into the hepatic, left gastric, and lienal arteries. Only 1 male animal presented a bifurcation formed between the hepatic artery and a gastrolienal trunk.
Conclusions: These anatomical characteristics are similar to those of other species of the Canidae family, possibly due to their phylogenetic proximity.
Keywords: animal anatomy; cardiovascular system; crab-eating-fox; wild carnivorans.