In This Issue—July 15, 2008

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The International Symposium on Beef Cattle Welfare in May examined issues of animal pain and distress from weaning to slaughter—while the AVMA Executive Board approved several animal welfare initiatives in June, including a revised policy on “Disabled Livestock.”

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Letters to the Editor

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What Is Your Diagnosis?

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ECG of the Month

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Theriogenology Question of the Month

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Veterinary student and veterinarian attitudes toward veterinary public health and epidemiology

The present perceived shortage of veterinarians trained in public health and epidemiology is projected to worsen in the near future. Information associated with whether veterinary students and veterinarians have an interest in public health and epidemiology may be useful in designing strategies to increase the number of veterinarians entering public health careers.

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Published recommendations regarding biosecurity practices for various production animal species and classes

Web sites maintained by national producer organizations, university cooperative extension services, and state departments of agriculture often contain wide variations in recommended biosecurity practices. Thus, it is possible that some producers fail to implement important biosecurity practices in part because of confusion about the specific recommendations they should follow.

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Executive summary of the AVMA One Health Initiative Task Force report

People, animals, and the environment are inextricably interconnected, with the health of each group dependent on the health of the others. In recognition of this, the AVMA in 2007 established a One Health Initiative Task Force to study the feasibility of a campaign to facilitate collaboration and cooperation among health science professions, academic institutions, governmental agencies, and industry.

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Isoflurane vapor versus liquid techniques for chamber induction of anesthesia in cats

The conventional method for chamber induction of anesthesia uses an oxygen flow-through system that delivers oxygen and an inhalant anesthetic to the chamber. However, some cats do not have a smooth anesthetic induction with this technique. Comparison of anesthetic induction in 51 cats randomly assigned to isoflurane chamber induction by use of the conventional vapor technique (n = 26) or a new technique in which liquid isoflurane was injected into a vaporization tray mounted to the interior surface of the chamber lid (25) revealed that anesthetic induction was more rapid and of better quality in cats in which the liquid injection technique was used.

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Analgesic efficacy of butorphanol and morphine in bearded dragons and corn snakes

Information regarding pain control in reptiles is particularly scarce, even though reptiles are frequently maintained as companion animals and in zoologic and scientific laboratory facilities. In a study involving 12 bearded dragons and 13 corn snakes, butorphanol was not found to be an effective analgesic in bearded dragons, although morphine was effective when administered at high dosages (10 and 20 mg/kg). In contrast, morphine did not provide any analgesic effect in corn snakes, but butorphanol was effective when administered at a high dosage (20 mg/kg). Findings suggested that analgesic efficacy of butorphanol and morphine may be species specific in reptiles.

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Severe reaction to IV administration of an ionic iodinated contrast agent in two dogs

Two dogs undergoing contrast-enhanced computed tomography developed acute severe systemic reactions during or immediately after IV administration of iothalamate meglumine, an ionic iodinated contrast agent. The first dog became profoundly hypertensive and bradycardic with poor oxygenation, apparent bronchospasm, and prolonged diarrhea. The second dog became hypotensive and tachycardic with erythema on the ventral aspect of the abdomen and pelvic limbs, periocular edema, and diarrhea. Both dogs responded to supportive care, and extended hospitalization was not necessary. Findings highlighted the potential risk for severe reactions associated with IV administration of ionic iodinated contrast agents in dogs and indicated that both hypertensive and hypotensive responses may be seen.

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Retinopathy associated with ivermectin toxicosis in two dogs

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Fundic examination in 2 dogs referred for evaluation because of a sudden onset of blindness and mydriasis revealed multifocal retinal edema and folds in conjunction with areas of low-lying retinal separation. Electroretinography revealed an absence of retinal responses in one dog and an attenuation of retinal responses in the other. Ivermectin was detected in serum samples from both dogs by means of liquid chromatography–mass spectroscopy; neither dog carried the mutation for the multidrug sensitivity gene. Both dogs recovered completely after exposure to ivermectin was discontinued. Electroretinographic findings improved, and retinal edema resolved with some residual chorioretinal scarring.

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Exophthalmus secondary to a sinonasal cyst in a horse

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A 13-year-old Miniature Horse was evaluated because of progressive exophthalmia of the left globe of 3 weeks' duration. Ophthalmic examination confirmed the exophthalmia and revealed mild blepharoconjunctivitis and complete resistance to retropulsion of the globe. Computed tomography revealed a large mass within the left caudal maxillary and left conchofrontal sinuses that extended into the left retrobulbar space and contacted the cribriform plate. Trephination yielded copious amounts of turbid yellow fluid, and a diagnosis of sinonasal cyst was made. Subtotal excision of the cyst via a frontonasal bone flap was curative, with complete resolution of the exophthalmus. There was no evidence of recurrence 4 months after surgery.

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Intranasal oxygen administration in neonatal calves with respiratory distress syndrome

The efficacy of intranasal oxygen administration in neonatal calves with respiratory distress syndrome is not clear. A review of medical records for 20 neonatal calves with RDS in which treatment included intranasal oxygen administration revealed significant increases in PaO2 and SaO2 in the first 24 hours after oxygen administration was begun, with mean ± SD PaO2 increasing from 38.4 ± 8.8 mm Hg to 58.7 ± 17.8 mm Hg during the first 3 hours of treatment. Calves with PaO2 > 55 mm Hg within the first 12 hours after oxygen administration was begun had a significantly higher survival rate (9/10) than did calves that did not reach this threshold (4/10).

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Cryptosporidiosis in 20 alpaca crias

Cryptosporidiosis was diagnosed in 20 alpaca crias examined because of diarrhea, weight loss, and poor appetite. Fourteen of the crias were between 8 and 18 days old at the time of admission. Common biochemical abnormalities included acidemia, hyperlactemia, azotemia, and hyperglycemia and high serum aspartate transaminase and γ-glutamyltransferase activities. Treatment consisted of supportive care (ie, IV administration of fluids, partial parenteral nutrition, antimicrobials, and oral administration of nutrients) and was successful in 16 of the 20 crias. Findings suggested that Cryptosporidium spp may be a diarrheal pathogen of unweaned alpaca crias that is more widespread than has been recognized.

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Health status of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins from the Indian River Lagoon and estuarine waters near Charleston, SC

Health status of 89 dolphins from the Indian River Lagoon, Florida, and 82 dolphins from estuarine waters near Charleston, SC, was evaluated. A panel of 5 marine mammal veterinarians classified dolphins as healthy, possibly diseased, or definitely diseased on the basis of results of physical and ultrasonographic examinations, hematologic and serum biochemical analyses, and cytologic and microbiologic evaluations. Percentages of dolphins classified as definitely diseased did not differ significantly between the IRL (32%) and Charleston (20%) sites, nor did percentages of dolphins classified as possibly diseased. Host and environmental factors that could have contributed to the various abnormalities that were detected were not identified.

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