The Use of Thermography in Examination of a Chinchilla
World Small Animal Veterinary Association Congress Proceedings, 2017
A. Ilgaza; S. Lapsina
Preclinical Institute, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Latvia University of Agriculture, Jelgava, Latvia


Chinchilla lanigera is a rodent of South American origin, mostly being bred for fur or kept as a pet. Similarly as other rodents chinchillas are stressful and therefore difficult to examine. Thermography is a method of a detection of infrared light emission.


The aim of this study was to verify the use of thermography in the external temperature measurements and clinical assessment of a chinchilla.


A group of 20 clinically healthy 9–24 months old female chinchillas was formed. A thermal imaging camera Flir i3 was used to measure the perivaginal temperature at 10:00 a.m. and 18:00 p.m. every day for 42 days, as well as examine each animal from a distance for abnormalities. In total 153 thermograms were analysed.


The average perivaginal temperature of a chinchilla was found to be 34.3±0.85°C, the evening temperature being 0.7°C higher than in the mornings throughout all research. At one point during this study a trauma-based contusion of a foot and an ear shell (Figure 1), as well as a ringworm patch was shortly noted - at first with the thermal imaging camera and afterwards clinically confirmed by a certified veterinarian.

Figure 1



Thermography can be used for quick daily inspections and the external temperature measurements in perivaginal area, but not estrus detection. Chinchillas have daily temperature fluctuations, with temperature being 0.7°C higher during evenings. Furless regions can be easily detected and verified for their external temperature.


Speaker Information
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A. Ilgaza
Preclinical Institute
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
Latvia University of Agriculture
Jelgava, Latvia

S. Lapsina
Preclinical Institute
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
Latvia University of Agriculture
Jelgava, Latvia

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