Ivermectin is a compound extracted from the soil in a golf course in Japan as part of a routine in discovering naturally existing soil organisms around 1974. The organism for which Ivermectin was synthesized from an active compound is called Streptomyces avermectinius. Its active compound is avermectin identified in 1975. In 1981, due to its effective drug dose that’s typically 50 times lower than most drugs required for parasitic infections in both animals and humans, the United States Food and Drug Administration (U.S. FDA) has approved its use. Today, Ivermectin is known in different brand labels and marketed by various companies.
Early researchers have found that Ivermectin is effective in the use against lice, mites, and worms found among cattle, sheep, horses, cats, dogs, and other mammals. It is lethal to parasites, therefore it is a poison. Although the U.S. FDA has approved its use, precaution is still suggested and the department has strongly urged its use according to government approved product labeling.
In its use for dogs, it has gained popularity due to its potential to save the lives of dogs affected with heartworms and other parasites (especially those that cause skin diseases in mange). Parasitic conditions sometimes do not manifest visible symptoms that it is difficult to say whether or not your dog is suffering from one condition that seeks immediate help. These are those moments when owners sometimes do not have a clear idea why their dog just look ill today, and then die the next day. Diseases caused by mites and heartworms are just some of the common ailments that prove to be lethal for dogs.
Such conditions are addressed by ivermectin. With a little help from your veterinarian, you will be able to provide your dog with a treatment when already infested or some preventive measures through medications. Chewable tablets, such as those from Heartgard and Tri-heart Plus, are available in 68, 136, and 272 micrograms. It is noted that the toxicity levels of these drugs are achieved in at least 15 times the therapeutic dose, and you will be tempted to say it’s a lot compared to what you are willing to give. However, take note that basically it is a poison that will kill parasites present in the dog’s body. Treating your dogs without the advice of a licensed veterinarian will be dangerous to your dog’s life.