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FDA Approves NexGard (afoxolaner) for the Prevention of Infections That Cause Lyme Disease in Dogs




(PRESS RELEASE) DULUTH, GA – Merial, now part of Boehringer Ingelheim, received approval from the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to expand the label claims for NexGard (afoxolaner), the chewable flea and tick product that is preferred by dogs. The product is now approved to prevent Borrelia burgdorferi infections by killing Ixodes scapularis ticks (commonly referred to as black-legged ticks or deer ticks), vectors that transmit the bacterium that causes Lyme disease.

Lyme disease is a significant threat to dogs in many parts of the country.  To reduce the risk of Lyme disease and the ticks that transmit it, pet owners should consider utilizing a multimodal approach.  This may include avoiding areas with high tick burdens and taking steps to reduce the number of ticks in their surroundings.  Pets should be checked daily for ticks, and any ticks found should be removed.  Pet owners can also consult with their veterinarians to determine if their dogs should receive a Lyme vaccination.  Veterinary experts also recommend year-round tick control for all dogs. 

NexGard is the first, and only, flea and tick product to receive FDA approval for preventing infections that cause Lyme disease by killing the vector ticks.  The approval comes just as veterinarians and pet owners in many parts of the country are being warned about the potential of an increased number of Lyme disease cases in 2018.

“When NexGard, an easy-to-give, beef-flavored chew, was launched in 2013, it was the first oral flea and tick control product and the first of the isoxazoline class of parasiticides,” said Zach Mills, DVM, Head of US Pet Veterinary Professional Services.  “As Boehringer Ingelheim continues to make advancements in veterinary medicine with a focus on prevention, having the first flea and tick product approved to prevent the transmission of the organism that causes Lyme disease is evidence of our commitment to do just that.”  


The FDA approval is based on two well-controlled laboratory studies, which showed that NexGard effectively prevented the transmission of Borrelia burgdorferi infections after dogs were infested with wild-caught Ixodes scapularis ticks 28 days after treatment with NexGard.  

“Both studies measured the transmission of B. burgdorferi to dogs after exposure to infected ticks.  All dogs treated with NexGard tested negative for B. burgdorferi infection, demonstrating that transmission was prevented as a direct result of NexGard killing infected ticks,” said Dr. Mills. “This research shows that NexGard provides a full month of protection against black-legged ticks infected with the bacterium that causes Lyme disease.” 

In addition to killing black-legged ticks, NexGard also kills Lone star ticks, American dog ticks and brown dog ticks. It also prevents flea infestations by killing adult fleas before they lay eggs. NexGard remains veterinarians’ top choice for flea and tick protection in dogs.

To learn more about NexGard, visit or contact your veterinarian. 

Important Safety Information

NexGard is for use in dogs only. The most frequently reported adverse reactions include vomiting, pruritus, lethargy, diarrhea, and lack of appetite. The safe use of NexGard in pregnant, breeding, or lactating dogs has not been evaluated. Use with caution in dogs with a history of seizures or neurologic disorders. For more information, click here for full prescribing information or visit




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