Important factors in decision-making in tetanus cases in donkeys: experience of donkey health and welfare project, Ethiopia
There is not enough information on tetanus in working donkeys and factors that affect the outcome of the disease. Medical records of 45 working donkeys with a history of tetanus presented to the Donkey Health and Welfare Project, Debre Zeit, Ethiopia between 2008 and 2009 were reviewed. The animals were admitted to the clinic for intensive treatment. The cases were divided into survivors and non-survivors groups. The clinical data of survivors and non-survivors were compared using a 2-sample t-test and chi-square test. The average time interval between the first clinical signs and recovery was 19.00±3.50 days for survivors. The survival rate was 66.3%. The first week appears to be the critical period for survival. Further data analysis showed no association between Tetanus Anti- Toxin (TAT) treatment and outcome. The occurrence of tetanus in working donkeys showed seasonality. The majority of tetanus cases were observed during the wet rainy season. Time elapsed between first clinical signs and hospitalization, complete lock jaw, dyspnoea, drenching pneumonia, and recumbency were the major indicators of poor prognosis for working donkeys suffering from tetanus.