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Therapeutic use of methocarbamol in a demoiselle crane (Anthropoides virgo) with severe ataxia and lateroflexion of the neck
  1. Lisa Done1 and
  2. Donna Ialeggio2
  1. 1Oxnard, California, USA
  2. 2Philadelphia Zoo, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Lisa Done, exoticvet{at}


After running at high speed into a fence, an adult, male demoiselle crane (Anthropoides virgo), estimated age 20 years, presented with ataxia, inability to stand and severe lateroflexion of the base of the neck. Therapy for severe shock along with other supportive care treatments provided improvement. After the crane was transferred to a stall six days post presentation, it repeatedly ran into the walls, resulting in the inability to stand. Despite sling support and ongoing corticosteroid therapy, euthanasia was considered. The caudal cervical area was very stiff, with markedly reduced lateral and dorsoventral range of motion. Treatment with intravenous methocarbamol, a centrally acting muscle relaxant, was initiated. Within several hours of the first methocarbamol injection, the caudal cervical area became palpably more flexible. After 54 days of hospitalisation and 30 days of methocarbamol treatment, the crane was normal without clinical evidence of ataxia or lateroflexion of the neck.

  • Musculoskeletal
  • Spine
  • Trauma
  • Treatment
  • Zoo animals
  • Birds
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