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Self-selection of the analgesic drug carprofen by lame broiler chickens
  1. T. C. Danbury, BSc, PhD1,
  2. C. A. Weeks, BSc, PhD1,
  3. A. E. Waterman-Pearson, BVSc, PhD, FRCVS, DVA, DipIECVA, MRCA1,
  4. S. C. Kestin, BSc1 and
  5. J. P. Chambers, BVSc, PhD, MRCVS2
  1. 1 Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, Langford, Bristol BS40 5DU
  2. 2 Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Massey University, Private Bag 11222, Palmerston North, New Zealand
  1. Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, Langford, Bristol BS40 5DU

Abstract

Lame and sound broilers, selected from commercial flocks, were trained to discriminate between different coloured feeds, one of which contained carprofen. The two feeds were then offered simultaneously and the birds were allowed to select their own diet from the two feeds. In an initial study to assess the most appropriate concentration of drug, the plasma concentrations of carprofen were linearly related to the birds' dietary intake. The walking ability of lame birds was also significantly improved in a dose-dependent manner and lame birds tended to consume more analgesic than sound birds. In a second study, in which only one concentration of analgesic was used, lame birds selected significantly more drugged feed than sound birds, and that as the severity of the lameness increased, lame birds consumed a significantly higher proportion of the drugged feed.

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