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Survey-based pilot study into the chosen therapy and prophylaxis used by UK primary care veterinary surgeons against canine angiostrongylosis

Shuttleworth, Adam; Dunning, Mark; Wright, Ian; Elsheikha, Hany M.


Adam Shuttleworth

Ian Wright


Canine Angiostrongylosis (CA), a gastropod-borne parasitic infection caused by the metastrongyloid nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum, is an important cause of significant morbidity to domestic dogs across the UK as well as in other European countries. This study aimed to ascertain the frequency at which particular drugs were used by primary care practitioners in the UK for therapy against and prophylaxis for CA. Primary care veterinary clinicians were surveyed using an online questionnaire and face-to-face or telephone interviews. Eighty-six veterinary surgeons responded. The majority of practices (n?=?52) included lungworm in their standard anthelmintic protocols; moxidectin was the most common drug used for prophylaxis (n?=?71). Fenbendazole was the most frequently selected drug, by 45% of vets, for treatment of confirmed cases of CA despite it being unlicensed for this purpose in the UK and the absence of a clear treatment protocol. The results of this pilot study provide an initial insight into the approach taken by primary care practitioners in their approach to CA. This provides an important starting point for future studies investigating the decision-making for CA amongst UK veterinary surgeons, particularly to clarify whether in a larger cohort an unlicensed drug remains the treatment of choice. The absence of a clear protocol for fenbendazole means that treatment of dogs affected by CA may be suboptimal, increasing the risk of morbidity and mortality.


Shuttleworth, A., Dunning, M., Wright, I., & Elsheikha, H. M. (2018). Survey-based pilot study into the chosen therapy and prophylaxis used by UK primary care veterinary surgeons against canine angiostrongylosis. Veterinary parasitology (Amsterdam), 14, 144-149. doi:10.1016/j.vprsr.2018.10.010

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 29, 2018
Online Publication Date Oct 30, 2018
Publication Date Dec 21, 2018
Deposit Date Nov 5, 2018
Publicly Available Date Oct 31, 2019
Journal Veterinary Parasitology: Regional Studies and Reports
Print ISSN 2405-9390
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Pages 144-149
Keywords General Veterinary; Parasitology
Public URL
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