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  • Author or Editor: Chelsea M. Conner x
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To evaluate 2 doses of alfaxalone on cardiopulmonary parameters, temperature, sedation, endotracheal intubation, the incidence of muscle tremors, and radiographic positioning in Quaker parrots previously administered intranasal midazolam and butorphanol.


10 healthy adult Quaker parrots (male = 5; female = 5).


A randomized, masked, crossover study was conducted where birds received midazolam (2 mg/kg) and butorphanol (2 mg/kg) intranasally 15 minutes prior to a low- or high-dose of intramuscular alfaxalone: 2 mg/kg (LDA) or 5 mg/kg (HDA), respectively. Heart (HR) and respiratory rate (RR), cloacal temperature, sedation quality, and ability to position for radiographs were recorded over time. The incidence of muscle tremors and the ability to intubate were recorded. Data were compared to baseline values and between treatments where appropriate. Significance was set at P < .05.


There were no significant differences in HR, RR, cloacal temperature, and sedation scores between treatments at any time point. Duration of time from midazolam-butorphanol administration to complete recovery from treatment administration was significantly shorter for LDA when compared to HDA (90 [60 to 195] vs 127.5 [90 to 10] minutes, respectively). Compared to baseline, sedation scores were significantly higher from T = 15 to 60 for LDA and from T = 15 to 75 for HDA. The incidence of muscle tremors was greater in HDA (9/10) than in LDA (7/10). All birds were successfully intubated and positioned for radiographs.


The combination of intranasal midazolam-butorphanol and intramuscular alfaxalone at the doses examined was a safe and effective method for sedating Quaker parrots. LDA produced adequate sedation with a shorter time to recovery and with fewer muscle fasciculations when compared to HDA.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research