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Oral Sedation


These can be used to assist with situations such as turnout after box rest, clipping, dental work. There are two sedatives available:

  • Acepromazine (often known as Sedalin Paste)


  • Detomidine (Domosedan Gel)



Administration Of Oral Sedatives


Please note that this form of sedation cannot be relied upon to produce a consistent effect in terms of general ‘sleepiness’ and removal of aggressive response.

Occasionally the horse or pony can in fact become more intransigent/aggressive. Therefore where potentially dangerous procedures such as clipping/mane pulling/trailer loading are carried out using this method of sedation, the operator has to accept the inherent risk. Increasing the dose does not necessarily alter the response!




This should be given in the same way as a wormer into the mouth. The horse should be kept in a quiet, preferably darkened area for approximately 30-40 minutes after oral administration of acetylpromazine, in order that sedation can take effect. Any form of stimulation (noise, light, tactile) during that period will diminish the sedative effect.

N.B. Care should be taken when administering acetylpromazine to males, particularly entire males and the drug should not be given to breeding stallions.


Domosedan Gel


This gives a stronger and more rapid response but also warrants the same precautions as above (see leaflet enclosed in packet). It needs to be administered under the tongue.

N.B. Precautions should be taken to avoid contact with the handler’s skin as it can cause sedation through absorption in humans. This involves wearing gloves, replacing the tube into outer packaging for disposal and avoiding contact with the lips of the horse.

Also if you are intending on using Domosedan for the dentist ensure that the dentist is wearing gloves after the horse has been sedated, as absorption through skin can still occur.

Beware – horses can still kick when sedated!

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