The role of domestic dogs in the epidemiology of Neospora caninum as well as the relationship between N. caninum infection of farm dogs and cattle were demonstrated, however, evidence is scarce regarding the role of wild canids in domestic animal neosporosis. The present study was undertaken to evaluate the role of wild canids in the epidemiology of bovine neosporosis in Israel by analyzing the prevalence of antibodies to N. caninum in wild canids. Sera samples were collected from 114 free ranging wild golden jackals (Canis aureus), 24 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and nine wolves (Canis lupus), which were collected in Israel during the years 1999-2004. Of a total of 147 wild canids tested antibodies to N. caninum were only found in two golden jackals with IFAT titers of 1:50, and in one red fox and one wolf with IFAT titer of 1:400. The low seroprevalence found in this study (2.7%) indicated that wild canids probably do not have an important role in the epidemiology of N. caninum in Israel. However, since the diet of different species of wild canids and even diverse populations of the same canid species vary, it is possible that other results might be obtained from specific wild canids populations, which scavenge in the vicinity of infected bovines.
- Neospora caninum
- Wild canids