Efficacy of two endectocides (moxidectin and ivermectin) against strongylus spp. parasites in UK donkeys
The Donkey Sanctuary is a UK based charity in Sidmouth, Devon. Its mission is to transform the quality of life for donkeys, mules and people worldwide through greater understanding, collaboration and support, and by promoting lasting, mutually life-enhancing relationships. The Donkey Sanctuary has a total of seven farms in the UK including a reception farm for new arrivals (quarantine) where the study is based. The relinquished and rescued donkeys by can arrive to the quarantine farm from different origins, for that reason, it is important to follow a health control program on arrival which includes a full coprological exam; this will determine the need of using an specific worming protocol. One of the most prevalent parasites is Strongylus spp. and it is very common to find animals with a moderate egg count who are asymtomathyc. The general recommendation is to treat donkeys with an egg count of 300 to 400 eggs per gram (The two antihelmintics used during the isolation period were two endectocides: moxidectin (Equest, 0,4 mg/Kg) and ivermectin (Eqvalan, 0,2 mg/Kg).
The worming protocol used for those animals that have been considered healthy on arrival and that they did not have received a recent antihelmintic treatment was to recieve an initial treatment with Moxidectin with a quarantine period of 48 hour without access to pasture. Those animals that have recieved a recent worming treatment( within the last 6 weeks) with ivermectin or moxidectin, they were only treated if the faecal egg count was higher than 50 epg or a different type of parasite was found (for example pulmonary nematodes). No other actions were taken in those animals with Strongylus spp. after the first faecal egg count results if they had been treated with moxidectin, otherwise the previous described protocol had been followed.