Leopardus guttulus semen collection using urethral catheter method.
Considering the conservationist reality of animals kept in captivity, especially the small wild felids, this study aimed to describe the semen collection method using urethral catheterization in captive Leopardus guttulus, anesthetized with ketamine-dexmedetomidine. Initially, 13 animals were used for semen collection using catheterization with different ketamine-dexmedetomidine doses. After determination of the best anesthetic dose for semen collection in this species, five male L. guttulus were submitted to serial semen collections using the catheter method. The dose for semen collection was 0.008 mg/kg dexmedetomidine and 10 mg/kg ketamine. The mean values for volume and concentration were 35.9μL and 552.8x106 sptz/mL, with a mean of 71% motility, 3.1 vigor, and 68% of spermatozoa presented vitality and 77% presented acrosomal integrity. Sperm pathologies obtained an average of 28% of spermatozoa with major defects, 6% of spermatozoa with minor defects and 67% of normal spermatozoa. The method advantages such as ease and low cost lead us to recommend the use in L. guttulus, since it presented good results regarding sperm concentration, motility, vigor, sperm viability and acrosomal integrity, being a promising technique for use in wild cats.