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Clinical Use of Deslorelin in Companion Animals

21 January 2019 – News

Deslorelin is a Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist, used not only for male contraception but also for oestrus stimulation or neutering. The use of slow-release Deslorelin implants is widespread in a range of pets, despite being only licensed for use in male dogs.

In male dogs, various studies have demonstrated its inhibitory effect in testosterone secretion and consequent decrease in testicular volume and spermatozoa production. Improvements in prostatic benign hyperplasia clinical cases and in behaviours related with testosterone levels have also been seen.

Deslorelin’s applicability in tomcats is similar to that in dogs but there may be some negative effects on behaviour and some studies report a decrease in seminal quality (which happens in dogs too but improves over time). In both species, implantation can be repeated.

In spite of its main indication in queens being oestrus suppression, it cannot be considered as an effective contraceptive in bitches.

In ferrets, Deslorelin implants are a good alternative to surgical contraception. Moreover, they can be used in the treatment of hyperadrenocorticism as they can significantly reduce, or even suppress, the clinical signs 14 days after implantation.

Unwanted reproductive behaviours in pet birds can also be reduced with this medication although the duration is less long lasting because of their different drug metabolism rate.

More studies about the effect of this drug in puberty, of adverse reactions and therapeutic efficacy are necessary.

Lucas X. Clinical Use of Deslorelin (GnRH agonist) in Companion Animals: A Review. Reprod Dom Anim 49 (Suppl. 4), 64–71 (2014); doi: 10.1111/rda.12388