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Objective—To determine whether microchips used for identification migrate after implantation in horses, donkeys, and mules.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—53 horses, donkeys, and mules.

Procedure—Twenty horses that had had microchips implanted in the nuchal ligament at a veterinary teaching hospital from 1996 through early 2000 were included (group 1), and the poll-to-withers distance and location of the microchip were determined, measured, and recorded. Additionally, the poll-to-withers distance was measured in 16 horses, 12 donkeys, and 5 mules (group 2), and microchips were implanted in the nuchal ligament on the left side of the neck. Fortytwo to 67 days after implantation, the location of the microchip was determined, measured, and recorded.

Results—Microchips implanted in the nuchal ligament ≤ 4 years previously did not migrate. All microchips were detected with a multimode identification tag reader from the left side of the neck in the midcervical region, and microchips were located at the midpoint between the poll and withers for all 53 horses, donkeys, and mules.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Microchips implanted in the nuchal ligament ≤ 4 years earlier did not migrate in horses. Microchips may be useful for identification in horses. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003; 223:1316–1319)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To evaluate efficacy and safety of using transdermal fentanyl patches (TFP) for analgesia in cats undergoing onychectomy.

Design—Randomized controlled clinical trial.

Animals—45 client-owned cats weighing ≥ 2.7 kg (5.9 lb) undergoing onychectomy, onychectomy and ovariohysterectomy, or onychectomy and castration.

Procedure—Cats were randomly assigned to be treated with a TFP (25 µg/h) or butorphanol; TFP were applied a minimum of 4 hours before surgery (approx 8 hours prior to extubation). Rectal temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate, force applied by the forelimbs, and serum fentanyl concentration were measured, and temperament, recovery, degree of sedation, severity of pain, severity of lameness, and appetite were scored before and periodically for up to 40 hours after surgery.

Results—Cats treated with a TFP had better recovery scores at 2 of 4 evaluation times, lower sedation scores at 2 of 8 evaluation times, and lower pain scores at 6 of 8 evaluation times, compared with cats treated with butorphanol. Use of a pressure-sensitive mat to evaluate force applied by the forelimbs did not reveal any differences between groups but did reveal a significant difference between preoperative and postoperative values. Mean ± SD serum fentanyl concentrations were 1.56 ± 1.08, 4.85 ± 2.38, 4.87 ± 1.56, and 4.35 ± 2.97 ng/ml approximately 8, 24, 32, and 48 hours, respectively, after TFP placement.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that use of a TFP (25 µg/h) for postoperative analgesia in cats undergoing onychectomy with or without surgical sterilization is safe and effective. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000;217:1013–1020)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association