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## Easy Dose CalculationsMany alpaca owners are nervous when it comes to drug calculations. This article will outline the common concepts related to drug calculations and walk you through a few exercises. By understanding these basic conversion factors and formulas, you will be able to calculate drug doses for your alpacas with confidence
The amount of active ingredient in a drug is commonly referred to as its
For liquid drugs, both oral and injectable,
Another factor that is often required when calculating doses is the animal's
Because weight is such an important factor, most drug dosages you will see in reference tables and prescribed by your vet will be written as giving so much drug (strength) per pound (lb) or kilogram (kg) of body weight. For example, you will see the prescribed dose of Ivomec often expressed as 1 ml / 70 lbs. This simple means that a 70 lb alpaca needs 1ml Ivomec. But what if your alpaca doesn't weigh 70 lbs.? This is where we need to use a simple formula to determine the amount to give.
Because the Metric system of measurement is commonly used in the sciences, often you may come across dose recommendations that are based on kilograms (kg) not pounds (lbs.). You could set your scale to weigh in kilograms so you don't have to convert units of measure, but most of us are more familiar with pounds. So, we need to convert the weight of our alpaca to kilograms and then use the formula above.
For example, you are told to dose your alpaca at 1ml / 32 Kg. Your alpaca still weighs 165 lbs. Here is the conversion formula:
Now that we know our alpaca weighs 75kg, plug the numbers into the same formula we used above:
The above formulas work well when you are instructed to give a certain volume (ml) of medication based on weight of your alpaca. But suppose your vet already knows the weight of your alpaca and she tells you to give so many milligrams (mg) of a liquid medication. In this case, you need to use a slightly different formula.
For example, you are told to give your cria 150mg of SMZ orally. You look on the bottle and see the drug concentration listed as 200 mg/5ml. Remember that:
So,
Remember: Before doing the calculation, convert units of measurement to one system.
1 Liter = 1000 ml 1 ml = 1cc
Updated January 03, 2012 |