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Prevalence of Echinococcus granulosus in farm dogs in South Powys, Wales

A. Mastin, A. Brouwer, M. Fox, P. Craig, J. Guitián, W. Li, K. Stevens

DUE to concerns about an increasing prevalence of canine echinococcosis (caused by Echinococcus granulosus) in mid- to south Wales, a pilot campaign was conducted in 2008 to provide dogs in South Powys with anthelmintics, estimate the coproantigen prevalence and evaluate potential risk factors. This study analysed data collected during the first quarter of the programme.

Farms keeping livestock (cattle and/or sheep) in South Powys were invited to participate in the study. Trained operatives visited each farm between May and August and completed a short questionnaire for each dog on the farm in a face-to-face interview with the farmer. Data relating to signalment, use, roaming behaviour and previous worming history were recorded. A random sample of farms was selected for coproantigen testing and, where possible, faecal samples were collected from every dog on the farm.

Faecal samples were collected from 577 dogs from 247 farms. The coproantigen prevalence was 10.6 per cent (95 per cent confidence interval 7.6 to 13.5 per cent), with 20.6 per cent (15.6 to 25.7 per cent) of farms having …

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