Date of Award

2009

Degree Name

Biological Sciences

College

College of Science

Type of Degree

M.S.

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

James Joy

Second Advisor

Charles Somerville

Third Advisor

Jeffrey May

Abstract

Most dog owners are unaware of asymptomatic infection and of the possibility of contracting zoonotic parasites from their dogs. We hypothesized that parasite infection is: associated with one or more symptoms; independent of gender and age; and independent of anthelmintic usage. Stool samples were collected from 231 dogs in Kanawha County, West Virginia, and were examined by simple fecal flotation. Parasitic prevalence was found to be 23% for Ancylostoma caninum, 8% for Trichuris vulpis, 7% for Toxocara canis, 4% for Isospora species, and 32.5% overall. There was no significant relationship between infection and gender, nor between infection and symptom for A. caninum, To. canis, and Isospora species. There were significantly more infections in puppies for A. caninum, To. canis, and Isospora species. Eighty-six percent of the dogs receiving anthelmintics were free of parasitic infection (P < 0.005). These results may lead to improved deworming protocols and awareness of dog zoonoses.

Subject(s)

Parasitic diseases.

Zoonoses.

Dogs -- Diseases -- West Virginia -- Kanawha County.