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Comparative study of chemical restraint in capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) using detomidine or xylazine associated with ketamine

Grant number: 17/03566-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2017
Effective date (End): August 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Veterinary Medicine - Animal Clinics and Surgery
Principal Investigator:Silvia Renata Gaido Cortopassi
Grantee:Caroline Topan da Silva
Host Institution: Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia (FMVZ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Capybara is the largest rodent in the world being found throughout South America to the east of the Andes. Capybaras have high reproductive capacity and are found in large numbers in the state of São Paulo, including the capital, within urban parks. Due to proximity of these animals with humans, the surveillance of zoonoses has also been increased, since this animal has several diseases and is suspected to be related to the re-emergence of Spotted fever. The management of free-living capybara is usually carried out in the field and its main objective is public health surveillance. In order for this to be possible and the procedure performed safely for the staff and animals, capybaras must be effectively captured and immobilized. There is no ideal agent to perform chemical restraint for the time strictly necessary for minimal procedures, rapid recovery and it be free of deleterious effects. Therefore, anesthetic agent associations are used to achieve this goal and to reduce complications. The anesthetic agents used should promote satisfactory muscle relaxation, allowing manipulation of the animal with minimal cardiorespiratory depression, mainly because it is a field procedure and with limited structure. In addition, the protocol should enable a brief anesthetic recovery, so that the animal can return to nature safely. The present work aims to evaluate two protocols of chemical restraint in free - living capybara as to the physiological effects and quality of recovery. The project will include 30 capybaras from urban parks in the city of São Paulo, captured and immobilized by the Department of Fauna of the City of São Paulo for monitoring and epidemiological surveillance. The animals will undergo minimally invasive procedures and will be immobilized for a short time before returning to free life. (AU)

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