Atropine Toxicity in Elephants

Summary Information
Diseases / List of Toxic Diseases / Disease summary
Alternative Names --
Disease Agents Atropine. (B455.w2)
Infectious Agent(s) --
Non-infectious Agent(s)
  • Atropine
Physical Agent(s) --
General Description Atropine toxicity results in an exaggeration of the effects of the drug used at appropriate clinical doses; thus the animal shows mydriasis, dry mucous membranes and atony of the gastro-intestinal tract. Higher toxic doses cause CNS stimulation resulting in signs such as maniacal behaviour and convulsions. (B455.w2)


  • A period of excitement occurred in an elephant (Elephas maximus - Asian Elephant) (28-year-old female) following the intravenous administration of atropine at a dose of 0.05 mg/kg (J4.205.w1)
    • Note: an appropriate clinical dose would be about 0.01 mg/kg. (B455.w2)


  • Signs appeared within one minute of injection of the atropine. 

Clinical signs: 

  • Swaying, kicking, agitated movement around the stall, and lack of response to commands. (B455.w2, J4.205.w1)
Further Information Treatment:
  • Signs of excitement should be controlled with sedatives or immobilising agents. (B455.w2)
Associated Techniques
Host taxa groups /species Further information on Host species has only been incorporated for species groups for which a full Wildpro "Health and Management" module has been completed (i.e. for which a comprehensive literature review has been undertaken). Host species with further information available are listed below:

(List does not contain all other species groups affected by this disease)

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