Pharmacokinetics of a Single Dose of Cefovecin in African Lions (Panthera leo) Following Subcutaneous Administration
2018 Joint EAZWV/AAZV/Leibniz-IZW Conference
Kelly Flaminio1*, DVM; John Mark Christensen2, PhD; Sultan Mohammed Alshahrani2, PharmD, PhD; Sumeia Mohammed Mohammed2, BPharm, MS
1Oregon Zoo, Portland, OR, USA; 2 College of Pharmacy, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, USA


Cefovecina is a third-generation long-acting cephalosporin antibiotic that has been studied in a range of species with varying effects.1 Cefovecin is commonly used in zoo and wildlife medicine empirically because of its broad spectrum and potential for a long elimination half-life in non-domestic species.2-4 This study evaluated the pharmacokinetics of a single dose of cefovecin in African lions (Panthera leo) using a crossover design after subcutaneous administration of low (4 mg/kg) and high (8 mg/kg) doses. Blood samples were collected serially for 14 days post-injection and plasma drug concentrations were determined by high-performance liquid chromatography with UV detection. The results showed that cefovecin exhibited first-order kinetics when the dose was increased from 4 mg/kg to 8 mg/kg of body weight. The peak plasma concentration was 9.73±1.01 µg/ml and 18.35±0.936 µg/ml after 4 mg/kg and 8 mg/kg dosages, respectively, and the time to peak plasma concentration (Tmax) was 4 hours for both low and high doses. The average elimination half-life (T1/2) was approximately 111 hours and 115 hours after 4 mg/kg and 8 mg/kg dosages, respectively. Cefovecin was detected in lion plasma above the reported minimum inhibitory concentration (0.06 µg/ml) for common bacterial organisms in domestic cats for 14 days (336 hours) post-administration for both the low and high doses.5 Based on these results, cefovecin administered at 4 mg/kg subcutaneously appears to be an effective and long-lasting antibiotic in African lions.


a. Convenia, Zoetis, Kalamazoo, Michigan 49007, USA


The authors would like to thank the animal care staff of the Oregon Zoo for their dedication to animal health and welfare by using operant conditioning training techniques, making this study possible.

Literature Cited

1.  Bertelsen MF, Thuesen LR, Bakker J, Hebel C, Grondahl C, Brimer L, Skaanild MT. Limitations and usages of cefovecin in zoological medicine. In: Proc Int Conf Dis Zoo Wild Anim; 2010. p. 140–141.

2.  Schrader, GM Whiteside DP Slater OM, Black SR. Conservative management of pyothorax in an amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica). J Zoo Wildl Med. 2012;43(2):425–429.

3.  Silva ROS, D‘elia ML, Soares DFM, Cavalcanti, AR, Leal RC, Cavalcanti G, Pereira PLL, Lobato FCF. Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea in an ocelot (Leopardus pardalis). Anaerobe. 2013;20:82–84.

4.  Steeil J, Schumacher J, Seibert R, Tobias K. Cevofecin (Convenia) for the treatment of septic peritonitis in a female lion (Panthera leo). J Zoo Wildl Med. 2012;43(3):678–681.

5.  Stegemann MR, Sherington J, Coati N, Brown SA, Blanchflower S. Pharmacokinetics of cefovecin in cats. J Vet Pharmacol Ther. 2006;29(6):513–524.


Speaker Information
(click the speaker's name to view other papers and abstracts submitted by this speaker)

Kelly Flaminio, DVM
Oregon Zoo
Portland, OR, USA

MAIN : Felids : Cefovecin in African Lions
Powered By VIN