Prevalence of zoonotic helminths in Italian house dogs
Introduction: Dogs may act as potential sources of zoonotic parasites, e.g. intestinal helminths like Toxocara spp., Ancylostoma spp., Echinococcus spp. In particular circumstances, the environment contaminated by parasitic elements represents a source of infection for people and animals. The present study has evaluated the presence of zoonotic helminths in house dogs from central and north-eastern Italy.
Methodology: Stool samples from 493 dogs were examined by a qualitative copromicroscopic technique and differences in prevalence of zoonotic parasites were statistically examined in relation to canine individual data.
Results: 48/493 (9.7%) were positive for at least one parasite. Helminths recovered were Trichuris vulpis (5.5%), Toxocara canis (4.3%), Ancylostoma spp. (0.6%) and Eucoleus aerophilus (0.4%), while no cestodes were detected. Age and living with other dogs resulted risk factors for T. canis infection.
Conclusions: The health risk associated with the occurrence of parasitic nematodes in privately owned dogs, along with the current anthelmintic treatment plans, are discussed.
Copyright (c) 2018 Francesco La Torre, Angela Di Cesare, Giulia Simonato, Rudi Cassini, Donato Traversa, Antonio Frangipane di Regalbono
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