Sub-optimal efficacy of ivermectin against Parascaris equorum in foals on three Thoroughbred stud farms in the Manawatu region of New Zealand

Sub-optimal efficacy of ivermectin against Parascaris equorum in foals on three Thoroughbred stud farms in the Manawatu region of New Zealand
Peer reviewed

Abstract

AIM: To ascertain whether resistance was present in Parascaris equorum to the macrocyclic lactone anthelmintic ivermectin, using faecal egg count reduction tests.

METHODS: Thirty-nine foals aged between 11 and 28 weeks on three Thoroughbred stud farms (Farms A; n=20, B; n=5 and C; n=14) were treated with ivermectin (Day 0) and faecal egg counts (FEC) were monitored before and for 21 (Farms A and B) or 14 (Farm C) days after treatment. On Farms A and B, the foals were treated with a macrocyclic lactone/benzimidazole/praziquantel combination on Day 21 and FEC assessed on Day 35. The three farms were all in the Manawatu region in the southern half of New Zealand's North Island.

RESULTS: Of the 39 foals, 15 were not shedding P. equorum eggs on the day they were treated with ivermectin, but all 15 did so post-treatment. The FEC on Farms A and B showed no evidence of a reduction at any time between Day 7 and 21; egg output increased steadily over this period. Following combination treatment FEC were reduced by 94% on farm A and 100% on Farm B. On Farm C, there was a 69% reduction in P. equorum FEC on Day 14. Twelve of the 14 foals on Farm C were shedding strongylid eggs on Day 0 and on Day 14 FEC were reduced by 84%.

CONCLUSIONS: Without comparison to untreated control animals, these results do not allow a reliable estimation of the exact level of efficacy of ivermectin against P. equorum, but they nevertheless show that, within the farms studied, ivermectin no longer achieved a complete kill of egg-laying adults and that foals treated with this drug may continue to shed considerable numbers of eggs after treatment. The results also indicate that ivermectin had sub-optimal efficacy against strongylid nematodes on one of the farms.


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