A European ectoparasitology working group has been set up to provide a set of practical guidelines that will help busy vets select the optimal control strategy in cases of flea or tick infestation in pets.

An ectoparasitology working group has been set up to provide a set of practical guidelines for vets across Europe. The group, which has been established to bring together best practice strategies in the light of changing ectoparasite threats met for the first time earlier this year.

Xenopsylla cheopis flea PHIL 2069 lores Headed by Dr Marie-Christine Cadiergues, lecturer, researcher and professor in dermatology at the National Veterinary School of Toulouse in France, and hosted by Virbac, the group of six leading independent experts from across Europe has been tasked with developing strategies that can be applied by vets when advising clients.

Virbac’s small animal ectoparasitology product manger Victoria Hudson said that using evidence based data where possible, the aim of the group is to produce a clear, practical set of guidelines.

She said: “These will cover treatment efficacy, practicability for client education and compliance, impact in terms of animal welfare, public health and potential resistance, and a decision tree covering a wide range of scenario presentations to define the optimal antiparasitic treatment options.”

Dr Ross Bond from the Royal Veterinary College, one of the working group’s European experts, added that despite the very common occurrence of flea and tick infestations in pets, control strategies can be challenging depending on individual circumstances of the case.

“It is anticipated that these guidelines will assist busy veterinary practitioners in their selection of the optimal control strategy,” said Dr Bond.


  • An initial report is expected in a few weeks time.
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