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Testing guidance reissued after wormer resistance reports
“The best approach to prevent wormer resistance is to evaluate and implement improved pasture management” – Prof Jacqui Matthews.
Treatment failure reported for praziquantel and pyrantel.

Following reports that equine tapeworm drugs may be losing efficacy, Austin Davis Biologics (ABD) has reissued its guidance on the use of EQuiSal salvia testing for informing tapeworm control.

A recently published study from the Department of Veterinary Science at the University of Kentucky found evidence of treatment failure of praziquantel and pyrantel, the only two drugs licensed in the UK for tapeworm control in horses.

Responding to this development, ABD is emphasising that owners should not repeatedly test and treat for tapeworm without evaluating management, as this could lead to resistance.

Professor Jacqui Matthews, director of veterinary science at ADB, said: “In horses that report with a borderline or moderate/high saliva score, their management should be evaluated to determine what improvements could be made to help prevent tapeworm reinfection from the pasture.

“As part of this evaluation, a follow up test can be performed three months after treatment to provide information on whether or not reinfection is occurring.”

In cases when horses test positive in the follow up test, Prof Matthews said: “Improvements in pasture management should be undertaken, and/or a tapeworm treatment considered where appropriate, to prevent further grazing contamination with tapeworm eggs.

“All co-grazing horses should be tested at the same time in case they act as a continued source of tapeworm eggs. The best approach to prevent wormer resistance is to evaluate and implement improved pasture management to move to a situation where recurring reinfection is considerably reduced.”

ABD suggests that when saliva scores stay high despite taking the suggested measures, anthelmintic resistance should be considered a possibility. In such cases, the company recommends that owners seek advice from their veterinary surgeon.

Image © Shutterstock

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VMG president joins House of Lords

News Story 1
 Miles Russell, president of the Veterinary Management Group (VMG), has been elected to the House of Lords as a crossbench hereditary peer.

He will join Lord Trees as a representative of the veterinary sector in the second chamber of the UK parliament.

Lord Russell said: "Those of us working in the animal health and veterinary sectors are only too aware of the importance of the work we do and the challenges we face.

"I will use my platform in the House of Lords to increase understanding of our sectors and to promote positive change." 

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Sixth case of bluetongue confirmed

A sixth case of bluetongue virus serotype 3 has been confirmed in the UK.

The case was detected in an animal on a premises linked to one of the farms within the Temporary Control Zone (TCZ) currently in place near Canterbury, Kent.

In response, the Animal and Plant Health Agency has extended the TCZ. Investigations into the spread of the disease are ongoing.

The cases in Kent come at a time when a new strain of the virus has spread rapidly across farms in the Netherlands. Both the Government and the British Veterinary Association have urged livestock keepers to remain vigilant.

Bluetongue is a notifiable disease and suspected cases must be reported immediately on 03000 200 301 in England or 03003 038 268 in Wales. In Scotland, possible cases should be reported to the local field services office.