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In practice
Volume 44 | Issue 2 (Mar 2022)

Veterinary approach to the amphibian patient

In Pract. Mar 2022;44(2):91-99. 19 Refs
Mark Naguib1
1 Battle Flatts Veterinary Clinic - Stamford Bridge, York41 1AN, UK.

Author Abstract

Background: Amphibians are commonly kept in the UK but are afforded little time in veterinary curricula and are often grouped with reptiles in veterinary texts and continuing professional development resources. While the approach to the amphibian patient shares some similarities with how reptiles are approached, there are significant zoological, biological and clinical differences. A background knowledge of their anatomy, physiology, biology and husbandry is required in order to successfully diagnose and treat illness. Three orders of amphibian exist: the anura (frogs and toads), the caudata or urodela (newts and salamanders) and the gymnophiona (caecilians). Although the number of amphibian species kept and bred in captivity is vast, practitioners in the UK are likely to encounter some species more commonly than others.

Aim of the article: This article outlines the veterinary approach to the amphibian patient, discusses some of the diagnostic and therapeutic options available and provides an overview of the most common conditions seen in these species.

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Archives Highlights:
Effect of Clostridium butyricum on Gastrointestinal Infections.
Owing to its preventive and ameliorative effects on gastrointestinal infections, C. butyricum MIYAIRI 588 (CBM 588) has been used as a probiotic in clinical and veterinary medicine for decades. C. butyricum is widely effective against Clostoridioides difficile, the causative pathogen of nosocomial infections; Helicobacter pylori, the causative pathogen of gastric cancer; and antibiotic-resistant Escherichia coli. C. butyricum is expected to be one of the antimicrobial-resistance (AMR) countermeasures for the One-health approach.
Dog bite wounds in cats: a retrospective study of 72 cases.
The study included 72 cats diagnosed with canine bite wounds (with the dog attacks having been witnessed). Seventy-one percent of cats suffered multiple injuries, and there was a significant association between the number of injured body areas and survival, and between severity of injury and survival. Fifty percent of cats were treated conservatively, 32% by local surgical debridement, and 18% of cats required an exploratory procedure. Fifty-seven cats (79%) survived to discharge.
Validation of Medicinal Leeches (Hirudo medicinalis) as a Non-invasive Blood Sampling Tool for Hematology and Biochemistry Profiling in Mammals.
Medicinal leeches were manually applied on 67 zoo animals of eleven species, and control blood samples were obtained by venipuncture of the jugular vein. The leeches drew up to 20 ml of blood in 20 to 55 min. Although most hematological and biochemical parameters were significantly altered in leech-derived samples, their values showed strong to very strong correlations with venipuncture in all blood parameters, except for sodium. As the parameter alterations and correlations were similar among species, simple cross-species regression formulas were sufficient to correct the alterations, thereby ensuring good repeatability between leeches and venipuncture in most parameters.
Enteral & Parenteral Nutrition in the Intensive Care Unit
Continual reassessment can help determine when to transition the patient from assisted feeding to voluntary consumption of food. Nutritional support should only be discontinued when the patient can consume ˜75% of their RER without support. In patients receiving parenteral nutrition, the transition to enteral nutrition should occur over at least 12 to 24 hours, depending on tolerance of enteral nutrition.
Non-blinded treatment of aural -hematoma with oral prednisolone as a monotherapy in privately-owned dogs.
Clinicians treated 24 privately-owned dogs suffering from aural hematoma with oral prednisolone at 1?mg/kg/day for 14 days, followed by 0.5?mg/kg/day for another 14 days. The success was assessed subjectively after 14 days by the owner and after 28 days by a clinician or specialist. In 21 of 24 dogs, oral prednisolone treatment for 28 days led to a subjective clinical improvement of at least 80%.

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