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J Small Anim Pract. 2011 Oct;52(10):515-21. doi: 10.1111/j.1748-5827.2011.01098.x. Epub 2011 Aug 8.

Antimicrobial usage in dogs and cats in first opinion veterinary practices in the UK.

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Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Royal Veterinary College, Hawkshead Campus, North Mymms, Hertfordshire AL9 7TA School of Pharmacy, University of London, 29-39 Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX.



To provide baseline data on patterns of antimicrobial usage in dogs and cats through the analysis of data stored in electronic practice management systems.


Clinical data from 11 first opinion veterinary practices were extracted for the year 2007. Descriptive statistical analysis was performed to assess the usage of antimicrobials.


Widespread usage of systemic broad-spectrum antimicrobials was observed. Antimicrobials most frequently used in both species were potentiated amoxicillin (44·4% and 46.1% in cats and dogs, respectively) and amoxicillin (14·3% and 20·7%). Cephalexin (13·4%) and cefovecin (15·0%) were also commonly used in dogs and cats, respectively. Systemic critically important antimicrobials in human medicine were widely used in dogs (60·5%) and cats (82·7%). Topical antimicrobials used in both species included fusidic acid (48·4% and 54·8%), framycetin (20·4% and 13·4%), polymyxin B (12·6% and 9·3%) and neomycin (6·5% and 6·6%).


Inappropriate usage of broad-spectrum antimicrobials may contribute to the development of antimicrobial resistance and loss of efficacy of antimicrobials in veterinary settings. Data recorded in practice management systems were demonstrated to be a practical source for monitoring antimicrobial usage in pets.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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