Prevalence of anthelmintic resistant cyathostomins in Prince Edward Island, Canada

Amanda Jaimie Butler, Haley Greenbank, Rebecca Parrish, Martin K. Nielsen, William B. Stoughton

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8 Scopus citations


Cyathostomins are the most common parasites of adult horses worldwide. Currently, the three classes of anthelmintics used to treat cyathostomin infections includes benzimidazoles, pyrimidines and macrocyclic lactones. However, due to widespread overuse, cyathostomins have developed varying degrees of resistance to all classes of anthelmintics. Fecal egg count reduction tests (FECRT) are currently used to determine the presence of anthelmintic resistance (AR), while egg reappearance periods (ERP) are used to investigate early macrocyclic lactone resistance. The objective of this study was to investigate the prevalence of cyathostomin pyrantel pamoate and ivermectin resistance, and to determine ERP at Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada horse farms. In addition, fecal cultures and larval identification were performed to evaluate the prevalence of small and large strongyle egg shedding in PEI. Fecal egg counts (FEC) were performed on 270 horses on 14 horse farms across PEI. Horses with≥ 200 eggs per gram (EPG) met the inclusion criteria and were enrolled in the study (n = 101). The median (range) horses per farm was 7.5 (4–11) and 6.0 (4–8) for pyrantel pamoate and ivermectin groups, respectively. Horses were initially treated with 6.6 mg/kg of pyrantel pamoate orally (n = 101). Fecal egg counts were conducted every two weeks for 8 weeks post treatment. Once individual FEC were ≥ 200 EPG, horses were dewormed with 0.2 mg/kg of ivermectin orally (n = 80), and FEC were performed every 2–3 weeks for seven weeks. In this study the ERP was defined as the week the mean FECR were 10% below the initial mean two-week post treatment FECR. Fecal egg count reduction tests and ERP were used to evaluate the efficacy of each anthelmintic. Fecal culture was performed to confirm the shedding of cyathostomin eggs. Fecal egg count reduction tests detected pyrantel pamoate resistance on 5/14 farms. No signs of ivermectin AR were detected, while reappearance of eggs occurred at 4–6 weeks and 7–9 weeks for pyrantel pamoate and ivermectin, respectively. Fecal culture detected large strongyles on 5/14 farms, which accounted for 0.3% of strongyle type eggs cultured. The prevalence of Strongylus vulgaris among individual horses in this study was 2.8% and was detected on 2/14 farms. These findings will allow us to educate owners and veterinarians on appropriate anthelmintic protocols in PEI and can be used as a baseline for continued monitoring of ERP and anthelmintic resistance in this region.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100629
JournalVeterinary Parasitology: Regional Studies and Reports
StatePublished - Dec 2021

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • General Veterinary


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