Small mustelids (British species excluding ferrets)*


Table of doses for small mustelids

Drug Dose Comments
Gaseous anaesthesia can be used in all species and in most it is the preferred method
  • 5-10 mg/kg i.m.
  • 20-30 mg/kg i.m.
  • For mink
  • For stoats and weasels
Ketamine + diazepam
  • Ketamine (25 mg/kg) + diazepam (25 mg/kg) i.m.
  • For stoats and weasels
Ketamine + medetomidine
  • Ketamine (10 mg/kg) + medetomidine (0.2 mg/kg) i.m.
  • Ketamine (5 mg/kg) + medetomidine (0.1 mg/kg) i.m.
  • Ketamine (10 mg/kg) + medetomidine (0.2 mg/kg) i.m.
  • For polecats
  • For stoats
  • For pine martens
  • 1 mg/kg i.m. (i.e. 5x dose (mg/kg) medetomidine used)
  • 0.5 mg/kg (half i.v.; half i.m.) (i.e. 5x dose (mg/kg) medetomidine used)
  • Reversal of medetomidine: 5x the medetomidine dose (i.e. equal volume of the 5 mg/ml atipamezole solution)
  • In common with most species, a delay in reversal of medetomidine of at least 20 minutes after the administration of combinations with ketamine is recommended
  • For the reversal of medetomidine given at 0.2 mg/kg (e.g. for polecats and pine martens )
  • For the reversal of medetomidine given at 0.1 mg/kg (e.g. for stoats )
  • 0.01-0.05 mg/kg i.v., i.m., s.c. q8-12h
  • Can be used in addition to NSAIDs
  • 1 mg/kg p.o. q12-24 h
  • The usual considerations for the careful use of NSAIDs in dehydrated, hypovolaemic or hypertensive animals, as well as those with underlying gastrointestinal disease, should be observed
  • Use with a histamine (H2) receptor antagonist
  • 0.5-1 mg/kg i.m., s.c., p.o. q24h
  • 0.2 mg/kg i.m., s.c., p.o. q24h

Antibiotic use (both appropriate and inappropriate) imposes a powerful selection pressure on bacteria and is the primary driver of antibiotic resistance. Eliminating unnecessary use in people and animals is, therefore, essential to safeguard this invaluable resource. The reader is referred to the Guidelines for responsible antibiotic use for further information
Amoxicillin/clavulanate (co-amoxiclav)
  • 12.5-25 mg/kg p.o. q8-12h
  • General broad-spectrum antibacterial use
  • 10-20 mg/kg i.m., s.c., p.o. q12-24h
  • Fluroquinolones should ideally be reserved for infections where culture and sensitivity testing predict a clinical response and use of first- and second- line antimicrobials would not be considered effective
  • Injectable form can cause inflammation and necrosis
  • 20 mg/kg p.o. q24h for 3 days
  • For the treatment of nematode infestation
  • 0.2-0.4 mg/kg s.c., p.o.; repeat after 14 days
  • For the treatment of nematode and mite infestations
  • 3.5 mg/kg p.o. q12h
  • Histamine (H2) receptor antagonist
  • For the prevention/treatment of gastric ulceration
  • 25-125 mg/kg p.o. q8-12h
  • For the treatment of gastric ulcers
  • Give before meals (requires acidic pH)

NSAID(s) = non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug(s)

Fowler ME (1995) , 2nd edition. Iowa State University Press, Ames, Iowa.

Hall LW, Clarke KW and Trim CM (2001) , 10th edition. WB Saunders, London

Johnson-Delaney CA (2009) Ferrets: anaesthesia and analgesia. , ed. E Keeble and A Meredith, pp. 245-253.

Fournier-Chambrillon C, Chusseau JP, Dupuch J . (2003) Immobilization of free-ranging European mink () and polecat () with medetomidine-ketamine and reversal by atipamezole. , 393-399.

Kreeger TJ (1997) . Wildlife Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Fort Collins, Colorado.

Arnemo JM, Moe RO and Søli NE (1994) Immobilization of captive pine martens () with medetomidine-ketamine and reversal with atipamezole. , 548-554

Carpenter JW (2005) . Elsevier, St Louis, Missouri.

Morrisey J (2009) Ferrets: therapeutics. , ed. E Keeble and A Meredith, pp. 237-244.

Bourne D (2016) Other mustelids. , 2nd edition, ed. E Mullineaux and E Keeble, pp. 242-252. BSAVA Publications, Gloucester.


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