The clinical effects of medetomidine, clove oil and propofol were evaluated in 36 clinically healthy leopard frogs, Rana pipiens. Under controlled laboratory conditions, heart and respiratory rates were measured at defined intervals during each trial. Corneal, superficial and deep pain withdrawal and righting reflexes were evaluated over time following a single drug administration. Medetomidine (150 μ/kg) failed to produce clinically apparent sedation in any of the frogs (n=12) despite a reduction in respiratory rate. Immersion in a clove oil (eugenol) bath (310 - 318 mg/L for 15 min) induced surgical anesthesia in all frogs (n=12). However, the duration of anesthesia was variable, ranging from less than 5 min to 65 min. Gastric prolapse was a common side effect of clove oil anesthesia (50%, 6/12) but the significance of this effect is unclear. Propofol (10 mg/kg) injected perivascularly in the sublingual plexus area induced sedation in all frogs (n=12) and light anesthesia in 58% (7/12). Propofol at this dose and by this route failed to induce surgical anesthesia in any of the frogs. These findings suggest that medetomidine is unsuitable as a sole anesthetic agent, propofol may be useful as a sedative, and clove oil may be used as a surgical anesthetic in the leopard frog.

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