Brand: ADVOCATE ®
Company: ELANCO (BAYER)
CHEMICAL CLASS of the active ingredient(s):
INDICATIONS: DOGS, CATS and FERRETS
PARASITES CONTROLLED* (spectrum of activity)
- Chewing lice (Trichodectes canis)
- Dogs: ear mites (Otodectes cynotis), sarcoptic mange (Sarcoptes scabiei), demodectic mange (Demodex canis)
- Cats: ear mites (Otodectes cynotis), notoedric mange (Notoedres cati)
- Heartworms (Dirofilaria immitis, Dirofilaria repens), including monthly heartworm prevention
- Roundworms, gastrointestinal and respiratory
* Can be slightly different in some countries: read the product label!
- Dogs, small >5 kg bw: 1 pipette with 0.4 mL (equivalent >10.0 mg/kg imidacloprid, >2.5 mg/kg moxidectin)
- Dogs, medium 5 to 10 kg bw: 1 pipette with 1.0 mL (equivalent to >25.0 - 10.0 mg/kg imidacloprid, <>6.3 - 2.5 mg/kg moxidectin)
- Dogs, large >10 to 25 kg bw: 1 pipette with 2.5 mL (equivalent to >25.0 - 10.0 mg/kg imidacloprid, >6.3 - 2.5 mg/kg moxidectin)
- Dogs, very large >25 to 40 kg bw: 1 pipette with 4.0 mL (equivalent to >16.0 - 10.0 mg/kg imidacloprid, >4.0 - 2.5 mg/kg moxidectin)
- Dogs, extremely large >40 kg bw: appropriate combination of pipettes
- Cats small < 4 kg bw: 1 pipette with 0.4 mL (equivalent >10.0 mg/kg imidacloprid, >1.0 mg/kg moxidectin)
- Cats, medium >4 to 8 kg bw: 1 pipette with 0.8 mL (equivalent 20.0 to 10.0 mg/kg imidacloprid, 2.0 to 1.0 mg/kg moxidectin)
- Cats, large >8 kg bw: appropriate combination of pipettes
* Can be slightly different in some countries: read the product label!
- LD50 (acute oral) in rats: >1000 - <2000 mg/kg (according to MSDS)
- LD50 (acute dermal) in rats: >2000 mg/kg (according to MSDS)
- Estimated Toxicity Class according to the WHO: III moderately hazardous (based on the imidacloprid LD50, learn more)
WARNING !!!: Never use on cats pipettes approved only for dogs. Never use on small dogs pipettes approved for large dogs. Learn more about spot-ons and their safety.
WARNING on macrocyclic lactones. Dogs of some breeds do not tolerate macrocyclic lactones or other medicines (e.g. emodepside) that can cross the blood-brain barrier. They can suffer more or less serious adverse effects if treated at dose rates slightly higher than the recommended ones. Consequently dosing must be as accurate as possible. This is the case for Collies and related breeds, which have a mutation in the MDR-1 gene that affects the blood-brain barrier and makes it more permeable to such compounds than in dogs without this mutation. Besides Collies, other dog breeds have shown similar problems, although the MDR-1 mutation has not been confirmed in all of them. The breeds more affected by this mutation are (% frequency): Collie (70%), Long-haired Whippet (65%), Australian Shepherd (50%, also mini), McNab (30%), Silken Windhound (30%), English Shepherd (15%), Shetland Sheepdog (15%), English Shepherd (15%), German Shepherd (10%), Herding Breed Cross (10%). Other less affected breeds are: Old English Sheepdog, Border Collie, Berger Blanc Suisse, Bobtail, Wäller. The only way to be sure that a dog is affected or not is to test for it. As more dogs are tested it is likely that the mutation is discovered in other breeds, or that the frequencies change.
WARNING on heartworm prevention. Heartworm preventatives stop development of microfilariae to adult worms but do not cure infections with adult worms. These preventative medicines are different from those curative anthelmintics that kill the adult worms. Preventatives may kill a few adult worms, but won't kill all of them. If this happens, such dead worms may block lung vessels, which can be seriously harmful, even fatal for the pet. Consequently, heartworm preventatives are usually not administered to pets that are already infected with adult worms (hence the periodic diagnostic tests), because the risk of serious complications is real. The infection has first to be treated with adequate curative anthelmintics before preventative products are administered. This is however not trivial, and also risky for the same reason. Ask your veterinary doctor.
Most heartworm preventatives contain macrocyclic lactones at a dose that kills microfilariae and ensures adequate protection for about 1 month, i.e. treatment has to be repeated monthly. In endemic regions with mild to warm climate it is recommended to treat the pets during the whole year, because mosquitoes can be infective the whole year through.
You may be interested in the following articles in this site dealing with the general safety of veterinary products:
- Safety for humans
- Safety for domestic animals
- Safety for the environment
- Hazard classifications of pesticides
Risk of resistance? YES, mainly in:
- fleas, mainly the cat flea, Ctenocephalides felis
So far there are no reports on flea resistance to imidacloprid, more than 20 years after its introduction for flea control. However, fleas have developed resistance to several other insecticides (e.g. carbamates, organophosphates and pyrethroids) and are certainly capable of becoming resistant to imidacloprid as well. Experience shows that prolonged and uninterrupted use of any insecticide against fleas (including imidacloprid) bears the risk of resistance development.
There are reports of resistance or tolerance of heartworm microfilariae (Dirofilaria spp) to ivermectin and other macrocyclic lactones in the USA (mainly in the South), probably including moxidectin as well. This has happened after about 20 years of very intensive use of such compounds there. This may happen elsewhere as well. Currently there are no other once-a-month treatments for heartworm prevention other than those containing macrocyclic lactones.
Alternatives to prevent flea resistance through product rotation:
- Carbamates (F+T*), e.g. carbaryl, propoxur
- Indoxacarb (F*)
- Insect Development Inhibitors (F*), e.g. lufenuron
- Isoxazolines (F+T*), e.g. afoxolaner, fluralaner, sarolaner
- Organophosphates (F+T*), e.g. chlorpyrifos, coumaphos, diazinon, fenthion, etc.
- Phenylpyrazoles (F+T*), e.g. fipronil, pyriprole
- Pyrethroids (F+T*), e.g. cyphenothrin, cypermethrin, deltamethrin, etofenprox, flumethrin, permethrin, etc. toxic to cats!
- Spinosyns (F*), e.g. spinetoram, spinosad
*F = effective against fleas; T = effective against ticks.
These alternative products may not be available in all countries, or may not be available as spot-ons.
Resistance of fleas to carbamates, organophosphates and pyrethroids is not uncommon in several countries, including the USA.
Are the active ingredients of this product ORIGINAL* or GENERICS**?
- Imidacloprid: GENERIC (introduced in the 1990s)
- Moxidectin: GENERIC (introduced in the 1990s)
*Meaning that they are still patent protected and generics are not yet available
**Meaning that they have lost patent protection and may be acquired from manufacturers of generic active ingredients other than the holder of the original patent.
ADVOCATE is a BAYER's original follow-up brand of ADVANTAGE. In some countries it is marketed as ADVANTAGE MULTI. Patent protection for imidacloprid and moxidectin has expired.
COUNTRIES where this product is marketed (maybe under another TM): EU, Australia and other countries.
GENERIC BRANDS available? YES, but rather few so far.
Click here to learn more about GENERIC vs. ORIGINAL drugs.
Administered about every 4 weeks, ADVOCATE controls established flea infestations and prevents flea populations to develop in the pets environment, but only if all the dogs and cats in the same household are treated against fleas. It also kills chewing lice (Trichodectes canis), mites and roundworms and prevents heartworms infestations. The logic of mixing moxidectin with imidacloprid is combining once-a-month flea prevention (ensured by imidacloprid) with once-a-month heartworm prevention (ensured by moxidectin) in the same product, plus the added benefit of mite and roundworm control.
Imidacloprid is a broad-spectrum neonicotinoid insecticide introduced in the 1990s (by BAYER). It is abundantly used in pets, but very scarcely in livestock. It is massively used in agriculture and quite abundantly also against household pests. Imidacloprid in this formulation has no effect whatsoever on mites, heartworms and roundworms.
Moxidectin is a systemic macrocyclic lactone introduced in the 1990s (by AMERICA CYANAMID → FORT DODGE → PFIZER → ZOETIS) effective against mites, heartworms and roundworms. It has no effect on fleas. It is moderately used in both pets and livestock. It is not used in agriculture or hygiene pesticides.
- Most topical products kill or sterilize the parasites before they bite and suck blood on the pet, whereas systemic products kill or sterilize the parasites only after their blood meal.
- Topical products cannot be vomited.
- Spot-ons and collars are very convenient to administer.
- There is a larger choice of topical products.
But topical products have also some disadvantages:
- Topical products contaminate the pet's hair coat and it is advisable for children and also adults to avoid contact with the pet for several days after treatment.
- Topical products may not control parasites in some parts of the pet's body (e.g. the ears, below the tail, between the legs, etc.), whereas systemic products reach the blood-sucking parasites through the blood wherever they are.
- Efficacy of topical products may be reduced or shortened through exposure to dirt, sun, shampooing, washing, rain, baths, etc., whereas efficacy of systemic products is independent from these factors.
For an overview and a list of the most popular pet antiparasitics for flea & heartworm control click here.
This article IS NOT A PRODUCT LABEL. It offers complementary information that may be useful to veterinary professionals and users that are not familiar with veterinary antiparasitics.
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In case of doubt contact the manufacturer or a veterinary professional.