Blood pressure measurement (indirect)
The tiger should be placed in lateral recumbency and an inflatable cuff used to occlude an artery. A doppler probe is then placed over the artery distal to the cuff. Recommended sites for the doppler probe include:
- Palmar arterial arch on the ventral proximal metacarpal region
- Plantar arterial arch on the ventral proximal metatarsal region
- Median caudal artery on the ventral aspect of the tail
Coupling gel should be applied to the doppler probe and it should be taped in position so that the sound of blood flow can be detected. The cuff should then be positioned on the limb (avoiding joints) or tail proximal to the probe. There should be enough room to insert a small finger between the cuff and the tiger. The cuff should then be inflated to a pressure that occludes the blood flow so that the sound of blood flow stops. The pressure this occurs at is the systolic pressure. The cuff should then be slowly deflated until the sound of blood flow is heard again. This is the diastolic pressure.
Normal systolic blood pressure in anaesthetised tigers is 122-218 mmHg and normal diastolic pressure 85-159mmHg