Veterinary Drug Handbook (VDH) is the reference veterinarians turn to when they want an independent source of information on the drugs that are used in veterinary medicine today.


Doses - OXYTOCIN

Dogs:

To augment uterine contractions during parturition:
a) 1 - 5 Units SQ or IM; repeat no sooner than 30 minutes if necessary (Wheaton 1989)
b) In bitches who fail to progress after appropriate physical exam and diagnostic tests:
Oxytocin 3 - 20 Units IM and/or with calcium gluconate 10% (3 - 5 ml IV, givenslowly) if low total or ionized serum Ca++ levels. May repeat oxytocin at 30 minuteintervals. If no progress after 3 treatments, recommend cesarian section. (Johnston1986)
To treat primary uterine inertia:
a) 5 - 20 Units (depending on size of bitch) IM or IV infusion. If no effect, give secondinjection 30 minutes later. If no effect, perform cesarean section. (Barton and Wolf1988)
To induce milk let-down in bitches with adequate milk production and who tolerate nursing:
a) Oxytocin nasal spray (Syntocinon®): 5-10 minutes prior to nursing tid (Loar 1988)
For adjunctive treatment of acute metritis:
a) To promote uterine involution and evacuation: 0.5 - 1 Unit/kg IM; may repeat in 1-2hours. Less effective if parturition occurred several days ago. (Magne 1986)
To promote uterine involution after uterine prolapse manual reduction:
a) 5 - 20 Units IM (Nelson 1988)

Cats:

To promote uterine involution after uterine prolapse manual reduction:
a) 5 Units IM once (Morgan 1988)
To treat primary uterine inertia:
a) 2.5 - 5 Units IM or by IV infusion (Morgan 1988)
b) 5 Units IM repeated in 15 to 20 minute intervals (Lein 1989)
c) 2 - 5 Units IM or SQ, may repeat in 45 minutes. 1 - 3 ml of 10% calcium gluconate given slowly IV, may be helpful. If no response within 45 minutes after second injection, initiate appropriate surgical intervention. (Lalibert 1986)

Cattle:

For retained placenta in patients
a) 40 - 60 Units oxytocin q2h (often used in conjunction with intravenous calcium therapy) as necessary. Of limited value after 48 hours postpartum as uterine sensitivity is reduced. (McClary 1986)
b) To reduce incidence of retained placenta: 20 Units IM immediately following calvingand repeated 2-4 hours later. (Hameida, Gustafsson, and Whitmore 1986)
For mild to moderate cases of acute post-partum metritis:
a) 20 Units IM 3-4 times a day for 2-3 days (Hameida, Gustafsson, and Whitmore 1986)
To augment uterine contractions during parturition:
a) 30 Units IM; repeat no sooner 30 minutes if necessary (Wheaton 1989)
For obstetrical use in cows:
a) 100 Units IV, IM or SQ (Package Insert; Oxytocin Injection¯Anthony Products)
For milk let-down in cows:
a) 10 - 20 Units IV, (Package Insert; Oxytocin Injection¯Anthony Products)

Horses:

To augment or initiate uterine contractions during parturition in properly evaluated mares:
a) 20 Units IM causes slow, quiet foaling;40 - 60 Units IM produces, quiet, safe foaling within an hour;100 Units or more will result in rapid completion of a more active foaling; IV (bolus) doses of 2.5 - 10 Units may be used to initiate parturition. (Hillman 1987)
b) For induction: If cervix is dilated at least 2 cm (internal measurement): 40 - 60 Unitsgiven as IV bolus, delivery should occur within 90 minutes.
If the cervix is closed or less than 2 cm dilated: give oxytocin in 10 unit increments IV at15-30 minute intervals. If the cervix dilates, but no signs of labor are shown, giveadditional oxytocin of 40 - 60 Units. (Carleton and Threlfall 1986)
To aid in removal of retained placenta:
a) Oxytocin Bolus: 30 - 40 Units IM at intervals of 60-90 minutes. If parturition occurredmore than 24 hours prior to oxytocin, doses up to 80 - 100 Units IM may be used.
Alternatively, IV doses of 30 - 60 Units may be used until an adequate response isdetected via rectal palpation of the uterus.
Oxytocin Infusion: Add 80 - 100 Units oxytocin to 500 ml normal saline and begin IVinfusion. Adjust rate of infusion according to mare's reactions. Slow rate if mareexhibits symptoms of excessive abdominal pain. Retained placenta generally expelledwithin 30 minutes. Gentle traction may help speed up expulsion. If several days havepast since parturition, doses of up to 300 Units (administered rapidly) may be necessaryto activate uterine motility. (Held 1987)
For mild to moderate cases of acute post-partum metritis:
a) 20 Units IM 3-4 times a day for 2-3 days (Hameida, Gustafsson, and Whitmore 1986)
For obstetrical use in mares:
a) 100 Units IV, IM or SQ (Package Insert; Oxytocin Injection¯Anthony Products)

Swine:

For adjunctive treatment of agalactia syndrome (MMA) in sows:
a) 30 - 40 Units per sow at 3-4 hours (Powe 1986)
b) 20 - 50 Units IM or 5 - 10 Units IV (Einarsson 1986)
For retained placenta in patients with uterine atony:
a) 20 - 30 Units oxytocin q2-3h as necessary (with broad-spectrum antibiotics). (McClary1986)
To augment uterine contractions during parturition:
a) 10 Units IM; repeat no sooner than 30 minutes if necessary (Wheaton 1989)
For mild to moderate cases of acute post-partum metritis:
a) 5 - 10 Units IM 3-4 times a day for 2-3 days (Hameida, Gustafsson, and Whitmore1986)
b) 5 Units IM, may need to be repeated as effect may be as short as 30 minutes (Meredith1986)
For obstetrical use in sows:
a) 30 - 50 Units IV, IM or SQ (Package Insert; Oxytocin Injection¯Anthony Products)
For milk let-down in sows:
a) 5 - 20 Units IV, (Package Insert; Oxytocin Injection¯Anthony Products)

Sheep & Goats:

For retained placenta in patients with uterine atony:
a) 10 - 20 Units oxytocin. Of limited value after 48 hours postpartum as uterine sensitivityis reduced. If signs of metritis develop, treat with antibiotics. (McClary 1986)
For mild to moderate cases of acute post-partum metritis:
a) 5 - 10 Units IM 3-4 times a day for 2-3 days (Hameida, Gustafsson, and Whitmore1986)
To control post-extraction cervical and uterine bleeding after internal manipulations (e.g fetotomy, etc.):
a) Goats: 10 - 20 Units IV, may repeat SQ in 2 hours (Franklin 1986a)

Birds:

For egg expulsion:
a) 0.01 - 0.1 ml once IM. Should be administered with Vitamin A and calcium (injectable).(Clubb 1986)

Reptiles:

a) For egg binding in combination with calcium (Calcium glubionate: 10 -50 mg/kg IM asneeded until calcium levels back to normal or egg binding is resolved): oxytocin: 1 - 10
IU/kg IM. Use care when giving multiple injections. Not as effective in lizards as inother species. (Gauvin 1993)
Monitoring Parameters -
  • 1) Uterine contractions, status of cervix
  • 2) Fetal monitoring if available and indicated
    Client Information - Oxytocin should only be used by individuals able to adequately monitor itseffects.
    Dosage Forms/Preparations/FDA Approval Status/Withholding Times - Veterinary-Approved Products: Oxytocin products are approved for several species, includinghorses, dairy cat le, beef cattle, sheep, swine, cats and dogs. There is no milk or meat withdrawaltimes specified for oxytocin. Oxytocin is a prescription (Rx) drug.
    Oxytocin for Injection 20 USP Units/ml in 10 ml, 30 ml, & 100 ml vials; available labeledgenerically from several manufacturers.

    Human-Approved Products:

    Oxytocin for Injection (Human-labeled) 10 Units/ml in 0.5 ml & 1 ml amps, 1 & 10 ml vials; 1ml Tubex, 1 ml Steri-Dose syringe; Pitocin® (Parke-Davis); Syntocinon® (Sandoz);
    Oxytocin® (Wyeth); generic, (Rx)
    Oxytocin, Synthetic, Nasal Spray (Human-labeled) 40 Units/ml in 2 and 5 ml squeeze bottles;
    Syntocinon® (Sandoz) (Rx)

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