Short Communication

Doramectin toxicity in a group of lions (Panthera leo)

Remo G. Lobetti, Peter Caldwell
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 83, No 1 | a509 | DOI: | © 2012 Remo G. Lobetti, Peter Caldwell | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 July 2012 | Published: 15 October 2012

About the author(s)

Remo G. Lobetti, Bryanston Veterinary Hospital, Bryanston, South Africa
Peter Caldwell, Old Chapel Veterinary Clinic, Totiusdal, South Africa

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Ten lions (Panthera leo) that were treated with a single injection of doramectin at a dose ranging between 0.2 mg/kg and 0.5 mg/kg showed clinical signs consistent with avermectin toxicity, namely ataxia, hallucinations, and mydriasis. Two subsequently died whereas the other eight lions recovered after 4–5 days with symptomatic therapy. Post-mortem examinations of the two that died showed cyanosis, severe pulmonary oedema, pleural effusion, and pericardial effusion, with histopathology not revealing any abnormalities. In both these lions, doramectin brain and liver tissue concentrations were elevated. Although doramectin is regularly used in wild felids, to date there have been no reports of avermectin toxicity in the literature. This article highlights the potential for doramectin toxicity in this species.


Avermectin toxicity; doramectin; wild felids; neurological signs; Panthera leo


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1. Assessment of Avermectins-Induced Toxicity in Animals
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