Baytril (enrofloxacin) Primer

Little Jo Wheek

Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 4:10 pm

Some notes I took from a recent talk on antibiotic usage in exotics by Dr. Doug Mader from the FL Keys:

Baytril injectable is to be given as a single IM (intramuscular) injection or IV only. Then, it is to be followed up with the tablets or a liquid suspension orally. This is on the label and for a good reason. The injectable may be given safely orally as well. Baytril is rapidly and well-absorbed through the GIT. Baytril has a pH of 11.0, which is almost as basic as bleach. It is VERY corrosive and damaging to body tissues when injected IM. Multiple injections can cause tissue necrosis and sterile abscesses (tissue death without infection). I've seen these in my own pigs and other animals. How I wish I'd known this earlier!

A suspension may be made with pina colada mix sans alcohol for the pigs. The left over pina colada mix is for the humans.

Baytril is absorbed 3-4 times better orally than Cipro, but Cipro is more effective against Pseudomonas sp. infections. About 10% of Baytril given converts to Cipro in the liver! Baytril is much cheaper than Cipro.

Baytril and the family of antibiotics called fluroquinolones (which includes Cipro) are the first and only so far drugs to kill microbes by inhibiting the DNA of bacteria from "unzipping"--an important process in replication.

Baytril is not used in human medicine since it causes hallucinations. There is a possibility that it may become a controlled drug since partiers may steal it. There is still the possibility that Baytril and other fluroquinolones may be banned from veterinary use, since there is so much abuse of the drug and the abuse is causing resistance in humans through various transmission routes.

Baytril may cause seizures, so it should be avoided or discontinued with animals who have seizure activity.

Baytril may be combined with other antibiotics in severe cases.

There is a new fluroquinolone called Orbax (orbofloxacin) that doesn't cause safety problems in young, developing animals. Efficacy is greatly diminished and it doesn't effect Pseudomonas sp. This one is strictly for the trash.

Baytril is NOT the only drug that may be used safely in exotics and is widely abused and overprescribed. Vets often turn their brains off when seeing exotics and immediately Rx Baytril for everything!

The standard dosage for cavies is 5-10 mg/kg every 12 hours (BID). A single dosage of 10-20 mg/kg may be given every 24 hours, but therapeutically dosing every 12 hours is better.

A good story of an abuse:

A veterinarian calls a referral vet with her problem. She diagnosed a turtle with diarrhea with strongyles (an intestinal parasite). She put the turtle on Baytril for two weeks and did a recheck fecal. The turtle still had diarrhea and still had strongyles.

What gives?

Perhaps an anti-parasitic drug would help!

(Baytril is an antibiotic and has no anti-parasitic action. Proof of choosing the wrong therapy and turning the brain off).
Last edited by Josephine on Sun Oct 13, 2002 4:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 4:25 pm

Did they talk at all about the use of saraflox in guinea pigs? This is also a fluroquinolone but I wasn´t able to find any info about it except for use in poultry. The exotics vet I originally took Sunny to prescribed saraflox and I have been curious about it.

Little Jo Wheek

Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 4:43 pm

Oops! I forgot to add that Baytril doesn´t penetrate pus. With pus, it needs to be cleaned out/away if possible regularly if Baytril is used or use chloromphenicol instead.

I don´t know much about Saraflox, but here's what I found:

Saraflox was originally made only for poultry usage. It was given to treat and prophalactically (causing resistance) in poultry to prevent E. coli mortality.

Abbot Laboratories pulled it from the marked in 12/00. The FDA banned its use in food animals and pulled the licensure for the drug in 4/01.

Bayer makes Baytril and while Baytril is not supposed to be used in food animals, there is still pressure to pull it from the market along with other fluroquinolones since fluoroquinolone-resistant bacteria are a threat to human safety.

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Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 5:16 pm

Hey, thanks for giving us some new info! And if some of the advice is news to you, much of us is news to us.

I had read a long time ago that baytril was considered a "big gun" and should not be the first antibiotic prescribed with an ill dog (dog site). One definitely has to know what is wrong to make the best choice of drug.

Thanks again!


Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 5:21 pm

Thanks, Josephine -- that´s all really interesting. Definitely all news to me! What does a layperson do with this information, though? Say you have an animal with a URI -- armed with this knowledge, you go in to your vet and say . . . what?

Little Jo Wheek

Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 5:31 pm

Well, you can always ask why they choose Baytril over Bactrim for URIs/UTIs. Or if an animal is not doing well on a specific therapy, you could suggest changing antibiotics.

If an animal has intestinal parasites, why put it on an antibiotic? It doesn't do any good.

A lot of this stuff is fun and some (like the dosing route) is important for laypeople to know if a vet is Rxing Baytril incorrectly. If a vet gives you a bunch of syringes filled with Baytril for injections--something is terribly wrong.

Baytril is often given to epileptics! It shouldn't be.

If your vet isn´t open to discussing reasons for Rxing Baytril, perhaps you should choose another vet.

Dr. Mader is awesome. From one lecture, I think I got a good impression of the type of vet he is. He expects his Techs to question antibiotic Rxing and dosing. He answers client questions in a similar vein.

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Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 5:42 pm

Baytril causes hallucinations in humans--how about our pigs? How can anyone tell if a pig is hallucinating?

Little Jo Wheek

Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 5:48 pm

That same question was brought up at the conference. For most animals, there would be outward behavior alterations if it was a hallucinogenic drug. One of my dogs was on Baytril for 4 weeks with no behavior changes. I've had several severe cases of infections in cavies treated with Baytril for more than a month each. I didn't notice any ill behavior.

Other than that, how would we know?


Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 5:55 pm



Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 8:13 pm

One of my cats was on Baytril for 85 days (not consecutive) in one year along with two other antibiotics (can´t remember right now) for a stubborn bite that got infected and two episodes of bladderstones. I thought it was abusive, but I didn´t know better at the time.

Joséphine, I´d like to print this for my vet. Can I?

Little Jo Wheek

Post   » Sun Oct 13, 2002 10:36 pm

Sure. Make sure that Dr. Mader gets the credit, although I paraphrased the info.

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Post   » Fri Nov 15, 2002 2:56 pm

Thanks for the information, Josephine. Good to get some background info.

One of our pigs (Piglet) started hooting and clicking last Friday night. She was fine by the time we got her to the vet on Saturday (of course), but two nights ago the hooting started again. So Piglet is now getting oral doses of Baytril.

She seems to like the pina colada mix... just like her father.


Post   » Fri Nov 15, 2002 3:08 pm

Oh no another Hooting pig!


Post   » Wed Jan 08, 2003 5:47 pm

Josephine, Re: the following in your post - I forgot to add that Baytril doesn´t penetrate pus. With pus, it needs to be cleaned out/away if possible regularly if Baytril is used or use chloromphenicol instead.

Our piggie has been on Baytril for a while now (on and off for a couple of months). Had an eye removed as well as a tooth that was loose - nasty abcess behind the eye was cleaned out and continued with Baytril. The pus has recurred everytime we discontinue Baytril (twice now). We have taken him in and they have gotten some of the new pus out but I doubt have cleaned it out very well (they take him away so we don't see what they've done and do not use anesthesia). He is eating well, happy (basically back to his old self) and has lots of energy, etc. - eats pellets, hay (alfalfa - he doesn't eat much timothy hay) and veggies...and has gained a considerable amount of weight. After reading your post, I'm wondering if Baytril will ever clear this up. The pus is thick and nasty stuff. They cultured the pus and kept him on Baytril several weeks ago. This week they re-cultured when the wound where his eye was re-opened due to pressure from the abcess. We are waiting for the results. If nothing has changed, does it make sense for us to ask to switch to chloromphenicol?

Thanks for any advice!

Little Jo Wheek

Post   » Wed Jan 08, 2003 7:53 pm

Perhaps. I know it is a tricky area to put a drain in, although most abscesses should have them--no matter what. If the pus is not regularly removed, the infection will not be cured.

It does sound like an antibiotic change may be your best bet.
Chloro will work, but has more side effects. Just monitor your pig really well.


Post   » Thu Jan 09, 2003 5:11 am

Thank you so much for this information! I don't spend a lot of time on the computer due to back problems and was looking for something else on the site when I happened upon this thread. I am going to call our vet and discuss this today. I had almost reached the point where I thought our situation was either hopeless or that our piggie would be on Baytril for the rest of his life (poor little guy HATES the Baytril suspension - starts gagging as soon as he smells it, even before I've put the syringe in his mouth). Thanks again!


Post   » Thu Jan 09, 2003 6:45 am

Baytril also comes in pills which is what I use for dosing. I cut the pills up and shove the section to the back molars. Up here we can get small 50MG pills which I quarter.

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Post   » Thu Jan 09, 2003 9:51 am

My pigs have gotten Baytril in a Hershy's Strawberry Syrup suspension. Tastes way better and they don't fight it.


Post   » Thu Jan 09, 2003 3:35 pm

My stepfather's rabbit is on Baytril for a URI. He crushes it up and puts it in some pumpkin with 1 cc of Benebac.

When she stopped eating it that way, he crushed it up, put it in some yogurt, and sandwiched it between two banana coins. She is eating this now.


Post   » Thu Jan 09, 2003 7:32 pm

Probiotics should be given two hours after the antibiotics. Otherwise, it's pretty useless.

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