Quarantine and Prophylactic Treatment for Snowshoe Hares at the FRSFM

Date Adopted: September 3, 2020

I.  Purpose

This Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) outlines the animal care requirements associated with the daily husbandry of captive snowshoe hares to ensure consistent and uniform care. This procedure applies to all personnel involved in the care of captive snowshoe hares housed at the Field Research Station Fort Missoula (FRSFM) outdoor enclosures.

II. Policy

It is a LAR policy to meet or exceed all federal, state, and local regulations and guidelines and to comply with all institutional policies and procedures as they apply to the use of animals in research. LAR personnel or Investigators involved in husbandry and care must pass on-line animal training modules and attend applicable training in animal care and use, occupational health and safety, and equipment operation before performing activities outlined in this SOP. Animal housing rooms should be entered using appropriate personal protective gear for the species and disease or hazard containment level.

III. Snowshoe Hare Quarantine and Prophylactic Treatment Procedures

Snowshoe hares brought from the wild into the FRSFM potentially carry bacteria, viruses, parasitic, protozoal, and coccidial infections that are transmissible to the other long-term housed snowshoe hares in the facility. Although no laboratory testing is performed to diagnose or treat any potentially infectious diseases, attempts to mitigate transmission of diseases between the snowshoe hares populations (temporary or long-term) must be made.

A.  Quarantine Procedures

1.  Outdoor enclosure quarantine for snowshoe hares

a.  Newly arrived snowshoe hares will be housed in an outdoor enclosure separate
     from the long-term housed snowshoe hares for 30 days

b.  A physical exam will be performed on the newly-captured snowshoe hares

c.  After quarantine and prophylactic treatments, snowshoe hares may be moved
     into enclosures housing with other long-term housed snowshoe hares

B.  Prophylactic Treatment of Quarantined Snowshoe Hares

1.  Snowshoe hares will have Selamectin (topical) applied to the skin to treat for
     heartworms, fleas, and hookworms  (Heartworm and hookworms are endemic in

a.  Revolution Plus® for cats; 2.8-5 lb

b.  Apply the entire dose to the nape of the neck

2.  Snowshoe hares will be given Albon (sulfadimethoxine). This drug is used primarily to
     treat intestinal coccidial infections.

a.  Dosage: 50 mg/kg for the first dose on the first day, followed by 25 mg/kg once daily
      for 9 days. The dose may be mixed with applesauce for ease of administration.

3.  Snowshoe hares will be given Praziquantel to treat intestinal parasites, liver flukes, and

a.  Dosage: 5-10 mg/kg (SQ) once; repeat after 10 days. The injection may be given SQ
     with a 22-20 ga. needle.