Asiatic lions (Panthera Leo Persica) and hybrid lions are often subjected to chemical immobilization and anaesthesia for various measures related to conservation and elective and emergency surgical procedures by veterinarians. Management of long term anaesthesia has been carried out under using injectable anaesthetics and ancillary drugs which pose problems due to change in depth of anaesthesia and alteration in homeostasis leading to stress and stress related complications. Significantly higher dose (p < 0.05) of xylazine and ketamine was required in sub-adult lions (1.08±0.10 and 2.70±0.26 mg/kg body weight) than adult lions (1.06±0.30 and 2.64±0.08 mg/kg body weight) for immobilization. Similarly lions required higher dose (p < 0.05) of xylazine and ketamine (1.08±0.07 and 2.71±0.16 mg/kg body weight) than lioness (1.04±0.40 and 2.61±0.10 mg/kg body weight) for immobilization irrespective of body weights. Ketamine and propofol (2 &1 mg/kg iv) could be used as induction agents. Propofol induction was safe for oral digital palpation of glottis and intubation. Isoflurane provided smooth maintenance. This work is useful for wildlife veterinarians.
Bharathidasan Murugan, Justin B. William, Thandavan Arthanari Kannan