A group of seven, zoo-kept, male black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) were examined as part of their quarantine health evaluation. Microscopic fecal examination demonstrated that all animals were passing oocysts of Eimeria spp. All prairie dogs were treated individually with ponazuril (30 mg/kg p.o.) administered in two treatments 48 hr apart. Three weekly pooled fecal samples following treatment were negative, suggesting clearing of the infection. No adverse clinical signs were noted. Most of the reported anti-coccidian treatments in rodents describe prolonged treatment protocols or administration of treatment in the water, which can result in unnecessary stress and handling or ineffective and uncontrolled level of drug administration, respectively. This is the first report of this treatment protocol in a rodent species, suggesting it is efficacious, easy to administer, and safe when treating similar infections in prairie dogs.
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