An innovative strategy for deworming dogs in Mediterranean areas highly endemic for cystic echinococcosis - Anses - Agence nationale de sécurité sanitaire de l’alimentation, de l’environnement et du travail Access content directly
Journal Articles Parasites & Vectors Year : 2024

An innovative strategy for deworming dogs in Mediterranean areas highly endemic for cystic echinococcosis


Abstract Background Cystic echinococcosis (CE), caused by the larval stage of Echinococcus granulosus sensu lato , is a zoonotic parasitic disease of economic and public health importance worldwide, especially in the Mediterranean area. Canids are the main definitive hosts of the adult cestode contaminating the environment with parasite eggs released with feces. In rural and peri-urban areas, the risk of transmission to livestock as well as humans is high because of the free-roaming behavior of owned/not owned dogs. Collecting data on animal movements and behavior using GPS dataloggers could be a milestone to contain the spread of this parasitosis. Thus, this study aims to develop a comprehensive control strategy, focused on deworming a dog population in a pilot area of southern Italy (Campania region) highly endemic for CE. Methods Accordingly, five sheep farms, tested to be positive for CE, were selected. In each sheep farm, all shepherd dogs present were treated every 2 months with praziquantel. Furthermore, 15 GPS dataloggers were applied to sheep and dogs, and their movements were tracked for 1 month; the distances that they traveled and their respective home ranges were determined using minimum convex polygon (MCP) analysis with a convex hull geometry as output. Results The results showed that the mean daily walking distances traveled by sheep and dogs did not significantly differ. Over 90% of the point locations collected by GPS fell within 1500 mt of the farm, and the longest distances were traveled between 10:00 and 17:00. In all the sheep farms monitored, the area traversed by the animals during their daily activities showed an extension of < 250 hectares. Based on the home range of the animals, the area with the highest risk of access from canids (minimum safe convex polygon) was estimated around the centroid of each farm, and a potential scheme for the delivery of praziquantel-laced baits for the treatment of not owned dogs gravitating around the grazing area was designed. Conclusions This study documents the usefulness of geospatial technology in supporting parasite control strategies to reduce disease transmission. Graphical Abstract
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anses-04485114 , version 1 (01-03-2024)


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Martina Nocerino, Paola Pepe, Antonio Bosco, Elena Ciccone, Maria Paola Maurelli, et al.. An innovative strategy for deworming dogs in Mediterranean areas highly endemic for cystic echinococcosis. Parasites & Vectors, 2024, 17 (1), pp.86. ⟨10.1186/s13071-024-06184-x⟩. ⟨anses-04485114⟩


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