Reindeer are becoming popular animals within petting farms. Few case reports describe the sedation of domesticated reindeer, but none describing the use of ocular local anaesthetic blocks in this species.
A 9-year-old, female, Svalbard reindeer (Rangifer tarandus platyrhynchus) presenting for removal of a squamous cell carcinoma involving the third eyelid. Standing sedation was performed using initial boluses of medetomidine and butorphanol via intramuscular injection prior to catheter placement and maintenance with a variable rate infusion of medetomidine. Supraorbital, auriculopalpebral, infratrochlear blocks and local infiltration of the base of the third eyelid were performed using mepivacaine. Following surgical removal of the third eyelid, atipamazole was administered intramuscularly to antagonize the effects of medetomidine. Patient recovered without complications.
Medetomidine-butorphanol in combination with local anaesthetic blocks provided a sufficient plane of sedation and analgesia for extra ocular surgery in a domesticated reindeer.
Key words: Svalbard reindeer, Anaesthesia, Local anaesthetic blocks for ophthalmic surgery, Ocular squamous cell carcinoma