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Papers of the Week

2019 May

Vet Parasitol X


In-home assessment of flea control and dermatologic lesions in dogs provided by lotilaner (Credelio) and spinosad (Comfortis) in west central Florida.


Dryden MW, Canfield MS, Herrin BH, Bocon C, Bress TS, Hickert A, Kollasch TM, Phan L, Rumschlag AJ, Ryan WG, Sampeck B, Smith N, Smith V, Warcholek SA
Vet Parasitol X. 2019 May; 1:100009.
PMID: 32904661.


Post-launch field investigations of recently-approved flea control products establish an efficacy baseline and in subsequent years can detect any efficacy decline suggestive of emerging resistance. As part of a continuing program of yearly assessment of flea control products in west central Florida, this study, using client-owned dogs, investigated the efficacy of lotilaner and spinosad in controlling fleas and in alleviating dermatologic signs likely associated with flea infestations. Forty-four qualifying households were randomized to either a lotilaner (Credelio) (minimum dose rate 20 mg/kg) or a spinosad (Comfortis) (30 mg/kg) group, with 33 and 36 dogs in each group, respectively. On Days 0 and 28 (±2) all dogs in each household were treated with the allocated product according to label directions, and all household cats received spinetoram (Cheristin). On Day 0 and at weekly intervals through Day 56 (±2), on-animal and premises flea burdens were enumerated, a veterinary dermatologist scored integumental changes using canine atopic dermatitis extent and severity index (CADESI)-4 and flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) scales, and owners scored pruritus using the validated canine pruritus severity scale (CPSS). At study entry geometric mean flea counts were 33.2 and 29.9 in the lotilaner and spinosad groups, respectively. For both groups, reductions in flea counts were > 99% at the first post-treatment assessment (Week 1), and 100% from Week 6 through the final assessment (Week 8) when all study dogs were flea-free. For both groups, at each timepoint, flea counts on dogs and in traps were significantly reduced compared to the initial assessment (p < 0.001), as were improvements in median CADESI-4, FAD and CPSS scores (p ≤ 0.001). At Week 4, the geometric mean flea count on dogs in the lotilaner group (0.1) was significantly lower than that of dogs in the spinosad group (0.6) (p = 0.027), significantly fewer dogs in the lotilaner group were found to have fleas (p = 0.034), and mean owner-rated pruritus scores were significantly lower (p = 0.025). Under field conditions favoring heavy flea challenge, two consecutive monthly treatments of dogs with either lotilaner or spinosad produced a 100% reduction in canine flea infestations and dramatic improvements in dermatologic lesions and pruritus, based on scoring by a veterinary dermatologist and by dog owners. Household flea burdens were driven to extinction in all but one home in each treatment group.