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Antiparasitic treatment of reindeer

Josefsen TD, Oksanen A, Gjerde B. Parasittbehandling av rein. [Antiparasitic treatment of reindeer]. Norsk veterinærtidsskrift 2014; 126(2): 216-219 (In Norwegian with English summary).

Antiparasitic treatment of reindeer is primarily directed against the larvae of the reindeer warble fly (Hypoderma tarandi) and the throat bot fly (Cephenemyia trompe). Ivermectin (Ivomec vet.) and doramectin (Dectomax vet.) are the only antiparasitic drugs registered for use in reindeer in Norway. The drugs are 100 % effective against larvae of warble and throat bot flies. The dose is 200 μg/kg. Subcutaneous injection gives higher plasma concentrations and a better antiparasitic effect than oral dosing or pour-on. In experimental trials ivermectin has shown high efficacy against gastrointestinal nematodes, a moderate effect against lungworms (Dictyocaulus eckerti), varying effect against the reindeer brainworm (Elaphostrongylus rangiferi), a certain effect against Setaria tundra and a good effect against the reindeer sinus worm (Linguatula arctica). An effect against the deer ked (Lipoptena cervi) could not be conclusively determined. Mebendazole and fenbendazole, given orally at a dose rate of 6 mg/kg daily for ten days, had a better effect against lungworms and brainworms than a single dose of ivermectin. The effect against gastrointestinal nematodes was more or less the same for ivermectin and the benzimidazoles. Although ivermectin and doramectin are the drugs of choice in reindeer husbandry, one should be aware of the limited effect against brainworms and lungworms when treatment is performed in late autumn/early winter.

NVI authors

Josefsen Terje Domaas

Veterinary pathologist (permisjon)