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Dental and Temporomandibular Joint Pathology of the California Mountain Lion (Puma concolor couguar)

Aghashani, A., Kim, A.S., Kass, P.H., Verstraete, F.J.M.
Journal of comparative pathology 2017 v.156 no.2-3 pp. 251-263
Puma concolor, animals, bone resorption, females, males, periodontitis, resorption, roots, skull, teeth, young adults, California
Skulls from 91 California mountain lions (Puma concolor couguar) were examined macroscopically and radiographically. The majority of the skulls were from young adult animals (57.1%). The skull specimens were from 42 male (46.1%) and 34 female (37.4%) animals, while the gender was unknown for the remainder. The majority (94.5%) of teeth were present for examination. Only 11 teeth were identified as absent congenitally; five of these teeth were maxillary first molar teeth and three were maxillary second premolar teeth. Abnormal tooth morphology was identified in 3.5% of teeth. The most common abnormality in tooth form was abnormally large crowns of the maxillary first molar teeth. Teeth with an abnormal number of roots were uncommon (n = 21). Ninety-one teeth were found to have an abnormal number of roots, most often two-rooted maxillary first molar teeth instead of the expected one root. The most prevalent dental lesions found in the California mountain lion were attrition/abrasion (93.4%), tooth fractures (80.2%) and periodontitis (38.5%). Less common dental lesions were tooth resorption (n = 32 teeth) and endodontal disease (n = 29 teeth).