CASE DESCRIPTION A 2-year-old male bearded dragon (Pogona vitticeps) was evaluated because of a traumatic mandibular fracture.
CLINICAL FINDINGS An open comminuted fracture of the rostral aspect of the right mandible was evident, with a fragment of bone exposed and dorsally displaced. Whole-body radiography revealed no evidence of additional injury. Other findings were unremarkable, except for moderate anemia (PCV, 19%).
TREATMENT AND OUTCOME The fracture fragments were stabilized with 2 crossed 36-gauge interfragmentary wire loops. An external fixator device was fashioned from four 25-gauge needles inserted at alternating angles through the fracture fragments; plastic IV fluid line tubing filled with dental acrylic was used as a connecting bar. One day after surgery, the lizard had regained its typical activity level and appetite. Body weight was measured and the external fixator was inspected 1 week after surgery and monthly thereafter. Three months after initial injury, the fracture was stable, radiography revealed bony callus formation at the fracture site, and the external fixator was removed. Recheck radiography performed 5.5 months after initial injury revealed complete osseous union of the fracture fragments, and the interfragmentary wires were removed.
CLINICAL RELEVANCE Surgical management of the traumatic comminuted mandibular fracture in this bearded dragon by means of a combination of internal and external fixation resulted in complete healing of the mandible and restoration of function. Management of this complicated fracture was achieved with the aid of readily available and inexpensive supplies in a clinical setting, which may be useful to other clinicians in the management of similar cases.
To evaluate efficacy and safety of anesthesia with dexmedetomidine-ketamine-midazolam (DKM) in five-striped palm squirrels (Funambulus pennantii).
8 male squirrels.
Squirrels were anesthetized with DKM (dexmedetomidine, 0.1 mg/kg; ketamine hydrochloride, 30 mg/kg; and midazolam, 0.75 mg/kg) administered IM. Atipamezole (0.15 mg/kg) and flumazenil (0.1 mg/kg) were administered IM 40 minutes after induction of anesthesia. Vital signs and responses were recorded every 5 minutes during anesthesia.
Anesthetic induction and recovery from anesthesia were rapid and without complications in all squirrels. Median anesthetic induction time was 67.5 seconds (interquartile [25th to 75th percentile] range, 5.5 seconds), and mean ± SD recovery time after drug reversal was 147 ± 79 seconds. Heart rate, respiratory rate, and rectal temperature significantly decreased during the anesthetic period. All squirrels became hypothermic by 40 minutes after induction. The righting reflex was absent during the 40-minute anesthetic period in all squirrels, with variable responses for the palpebral reflex, jaw tone, forelimb withdrawal reflex, and hind limb withdrawal reflex. Only 2 of 8 squirrels had loss of the limb withdrawal reflex in both the forelimbs and hind limbs from anesthetic induction to 25 minutes after induction.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
DKM appeared to provide safe and effective anesthesia in five-striped palm squirrels, but oxygen and thermal support were indicated. At the doses administered, deep surgical anesthesia was not consistently achieved, and anesthetic depth of individual squirrels must be determined before surgical procedures are performed in palm squirrels anesthetized with this drug combination.
Objective—To determine the efficacy and safety of topical administration of selamectin and to compare selamectin treatment with a common ivermectin protocol for the treatment of natural infestation with Trixacarus caviae in pet guinea pigs.
Animals—17 mixed-breed pet guinea pigs with active mite infestation.
Procedures—Guinea pigs were randomly allocated to receive a single dose of selamectin topically (15 mg/kg [6.8 mg/lb]) or ivermectin (400 μg/kg [181.8 μg/lb], SC) every 10 days for 4 injections. Microscopic examination of skin scrapings from all animals was performed at 10-day intervals for 60 days, and the presence of mites or mite eggs was recorded. The efficacies of the 2 treatment protocols were compared at every time point.
Results—Pruritus resolved by day 10 in all animals. Animals were microscopically mite-free on days 30 and 40 in the selamectin and ivermectin treatment groups, respectively, but groups did not differ significantly in regard to the number of mite-positive animals at any timepoint. Recurrence of infection was not noted in either treatment group. No adverse reactions were observed in any of the treated animals.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that a single topical application of selamectin at a dose of 15 mg/kg or repeated SC injection of ivermectin at a dose of 400 μg/kg can eliminate T caviae mites from guinea pigs within 30 and 40 days, respectively. Although effectiveness did not significantly differ between the 2 treatments, the convenience associated with the single topical dose of selamectin made it a preferable treatment modality for both patients and owners.
To determine the agreement between plasma total solids (TS) concentration as measured by refractometry and plasma total protein (TP) concentration as measured by biuret assay in pet rabbits and ferrets.
253 and 146 blood samples from 146 and 121 ferrets and rabbits, respectively, with results of CBC and plasma biochemical analyses.
Data were collected from medical records regarding plasma TS and TP concentrations, PCV, plasma biochemical values, plasma appearance, and patient signalment. Agreement was determined between refractometer and biuret assay (reference method) values for plasma TS and TP concentration. Other variables were examined for an impact on this agreement.
Mean ± SD plasma TP and TS concentrations were 6.4 ± 0.8 mg/dL and 6.6 ± 0.8 mg/dL, respectively, for rabbits and 6.3 ± 1.2 mg/dL and 6.4 ± 1.1 mg/dL for ferrets. On average, refractometer values overestimated plasma TP concentrations as measured by biuret assay. Plasma cholesterol, glucose, and BUN concentrations and hemolysis and lipemia had significant effects on this bias for ferrets; only BUN concentration had an effect on bias for rabbits given the available data. Other variables had no influence on bias. The limits of agreement were wider than the total allowable analytic error, and > 5% of the data points were outside acceptance limits, indicating that the 2 methods were not in clinical agreement.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Refractometer measurements of plasma TS concentration failed to provide a good estimation of biuret assay measurements of plasma TP concentration in rabbits and ferrets, suggesting that these 2 analytic methods and the results they yield cannot be used interchangeably in these species.
To evaluate the utility of commercially available reagent test strips for estimation of BUN concentration and detection of azotemia in pet rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) and ferrets (Mustela putorius furo).
65 blood samples from 53 rabbits and 71 blood samples from 50 ferrets of various health statuses.
BUN concentrations were measured with a clinical laboratory biochemical analyzer and estimated with a reagent test strip. Results obtained with both methods were assigned to a BUN category (range, 1 to 4; higher categories corresponded to higher BUN concentrations). Samples with a biochemical analyzer BUN concentration ≥ 27 mg/dL (rabbits) or ≥ 41 mg/dL (ferrets) were considered azotemic. A test strip BUN category of 3 or 4 (rabbits) or 4 (ferrets) was considered positive for azotemia.
Test strip and biochemical analyzer BUN categories were concordant for 46 of 65 (71%) rabbit blood samples and 58 of 71 (82%) ferret blood samples. Sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of the test strips for detection of azotemia were 92%, 79%, and 82%, respectively, for rabbit blood samples and 80%, 100%, and 96%, respectively, for ferret blood samples.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Test strips provided reasonable estimates of BUN concentration but, for rabbits, were more appropriate for ruling out than for ruling in azotemia because of false-positive test strip results. False-negative test strip results for azotemia were more of a concern for ferrets than rabbits. Testing with a biochemical analyzer remains the gold standard for measurement of BUN concentration and detection of azotemia in rabbits and ferrets.
Objective—To describe changes in venous blood gas analytes during isoflurane anesthesia in black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus).
Animals—16 black-tailed prairie dogs.
Procedures—Black-tailed prairie dogs were placed in an anesthesia chamber for induction of general anesthesia, which was maintained with isoflurane in oxygen delivered via mask. Immediately following anesthetic induction, a venous blood sample was obtained from the medial saphenous vein; a second venous blood sample was obtained just prior to anesthetic gas shutoff. An evaluation of venous blood gas analytes was performed on each sample. General linear mixed models with repeated measures were used for data analyses.
Results—Median anesthetic time was 90 minutes (range, 60 to 111 minutes). A significant increase from immediately after induction to completion of anesthesia was observed in Pco2 and mean blood chloride ion, BUN, and creatinine concentrations. A decrease in Po2, mean blood pH, and anion gap was observed from induction of anesthesia to completion. No significant differences during anesthesia were observed in mean base excess or blood bicarbonate, sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, blood glucose, lactate, and total CO2 concentrations. No complications occurred during or after anesthesia for any animal.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Examination of prairie dogs often requires general anesthesia, with isoflurane currently the inhalation agent of choice. Results suggested respiratory acidosis and relative azotemia may occur during isoflurane anesthesia of prairie dogs. Given the increased risk associated with anesthesia in small mammals and the propensity for respiratory disease in prairie dogs, insight into physiologic changes associated with isoflurane anesthesia in healthy prairie dogs can aid in perioperative evaluation and anesthetic monitoring in this rodent species.
To evaluate the effects of a dexmedetomidine-midazolam-ketamine (DMK) combination administered IM to captive red-footed tortoises (Chelonoidis carbonaria).
12 healthy adult red-footed tortoises.
In a prospective experimental study, DMK (0.1, 1.0, and 10 mg/kg, respectively) was administered IM as separate injections into the right antebrachium. Atipamezole (0.5 mg/kg, IM) and flumazenil (0.05 mg/kg, SC) were administered into the left antebrachium 60 minutes later. Times to the first treatment response and maximal treatment effect after DMK administration and time to recovery after reversal agent administration were recorded. Vital signs and reflexes or responses to stimuli were assessed and recorded at predetermined intervals.
DMK treatment produced deep sedation or light anesthesia for ≥ 20 minutes in all tortoises. Induction and recovery were rapid, with no complications noted. Median times to first response, maximum effect, and recovery were 4.5, 35, and 14.5 minutes, respectively. Two tortoises required additional reversal agent administration but recovered < 20 minutes after the repeated injections. Mean heart and respiratory rates decreased significantly over time. All animals lost muscle tone in the neck and limbs from 35 to 55 minutes after DMK injection, but other variables including palpebral reflexes, responses to mild noxious stimuli (eg, toe pinching, tail pinching, and saline ([0.9 NaCl] solution injection), and ability to intubate were inconsistent.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
DMK administration produced deep sedation or light anesthesia with no adverse effects in healthy adult red-footed tortoises. At the doses administered, deep surgical anesthesia was not consistently achieved. Anesthetic depth must be carefully evaluated before performing painful procedures in red-footed tortoises with this DMK protocol.
To compare anesthetic effects of alfaxalone-ketamine-dexmedetomidine (AKD) and alfaxalone-butorphanol-midazolam (ABM) in naked mole-rats (Heterocephalus glaber).
20 naked mole-rats.
Naked mole-rats received AKD (alfaxalone, 2 mg/kg; ketamine, 20 mg/kg; and dexmedetomidine, 0.02 mg/kg; n = 10) or ABM (alfaxalone, 2 mg/kg; butorphanol, 2 mg/kg; and midazolam, 1 mg/kg; 9) IM; 1 animal was removed from the study. Atipamezole (I mg/kg) and flumazenil (0.1 mg/kg) were administered 40 minutes after anesthetic induction (defined as loss of the righting reflex) with AKD and ABM, respectively. Heart rate, respiratory rate, oxygen saturation, and reflexes were recorded every 5 minutes.
The ABM group had significantly longer median times for induction and recovery than the AKD group. Administration of ABM resulted in significantly lower respiratory rates than administration of AKD from time of anesthetic induction to 10 minutes after induction. Respiratory rate significantly decreased in the AKD group from I0 minutes after induction through the end of the anesthetic period but did not change over time in the ABM group. Males had higher respiratory rates in both groups. Loss of the righting reflex was still evident 40 minutes after induction in both groups. In the AKD group, all tested reflexes were absent from I0 to 40 minutes after induction; the ABM group had variable reflexes that recovered within individual animals over time.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Both AKD and ABM provided effective immobilization in naked mole-rats, but AKD appeared to provide more consistent and deeper anesthesia, compared with administration of ABM.
OBJECTIVE To compare blood glucose concentrations of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) measured by use of a variety of portable analyzers with results from a laboratory biochemistry analyzer.
SAMPLE Venous blood samples (3 mL) obtained from each of 16 healthy black-tailed prairie dogs.
PROCEDURES A portion of each blood sample was used to measure glucose concentrations by use of an amperometric human point-of-care glucometer and a colorimetric species-specific portable blood glucose meter designed for veterinary use with both canine (code 5) and feline (code 7) settings. The remainder of each blood sample was placed into 2 tubes (one contained lithium heparin and the other contained no anticoagulant). A portable veterinary chemistry analyzer (PVCA) and a handheld analyzer were used to measure glucose concentration in heparinized blood. Serum glucose concentration was measured in the remaining portion by use of a biochemistry analyzer. A general linear mixed models approach was used to compare glucose concentrations and measurement bias obtained with the various measurement methods.
RESULTS Measurement bias and differences in mean glucose concentrations were apparent with all measurement methods. In particular, the veterinary glucometer, whether used on the canine or feline setting, overestimated mean glucose concentrations, whereas the human glucometer, PVCA, and handheld analyzer underestimated mean glucose concentrations relative to the concentration obtained with the biochemistry analyzer.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that none of the measurement methods provided consistently accurate blood glucose concentrations of black-tailed prairie dogs, compared with values determined with a biochemistry analyzer.
PROCEDURES Enrofloxacin (20 mg/kg) was administered SC once to 6 prairie dogs and IV once to 2 prairie dogs. A blood sample was collected from each animal immediately before (0 hours) and 0.5, 1, 2, 4, 8, 12, and 24 hours after drug administration to evaluate the pharmacokinetics of enrofloxacin and ciprofloxacin. Plasma enrofloxacin and ciprofloxacin concentrations were quantified with ultraperformance liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry, and noncompartmental pharmacokinetic analysis was performed.
RESULTS Enrofloxacin was biotransformed to ciprofloxacin in the prairie dogs used in the study. For total fluoroquinolones (enrofloxacin and ciprofloxacin), the mean (range) of peak plasma concentration, time to maximum plasma concentration, and terminal half-life after SC administration were 4.90 μg/mL (3.44 to 6.08 μg/mL), 1.59 hours (0.5 to 2.00 hours), and 4.63 hours (4.02 to 5.20 hours), respectively.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that administration of enrofloxacin (20 mg/kg, SC, q 24 h) in black-tailed prairie dogs may be appropriate for treatment of infections with bacteria for which the minimum inhibitory concentration of enrofloxacin is ≤ 0.5 μg/mL. However, clinical studies are needed to determine efficacy of such enrofloxacin treatment.