Incidence of Coccidioides infection among dogs residing in a region in which the organism is endemic

Lisa F. Shubitz, Christine D. Butkiewicz, Sharon M. Dial, Christina P. Lindan

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37 Scopus citations


Objective - To determine the incidence of Coccidioides infection among dogs residing in a region in which the organism is endemic (Pima and Maricopa counties, Arizona) and estimate the rate of clinical illness. Design - Community-based longitudinal and cross-sectional studies. Animals - 124 healthy 4-to 6-month-old seronegative puppies (longitudinal study) and 381 4- to 18-month-old dogs with unknown serostatus (cross-sectional study). Procedure - Dogs in the longitudinal study were tested at 6-month intervals for at least 1 year for anticoccidioidal antibodies. Dogs that became ill were evaluated for coccidioidomycosis. Dogs in the cross-sectional study were tested for anticoccidioidal antibodies once, and clinical abnormalities were recorded. Results - 28 of the 104 (27%) dogs that completed the longitudinal study developed anticoccidioidal antibodies. Thirty-two of the 381 (8%) dogs in the cross-sectional study had anticoccidioidal antibodies. Five seropositive dogs in the longitudinal study and 13 seropositive dogs in the cross-sectional study had clinical signs of disease. The remaining seropositive dogs were otherwise healthy and were classified as subclinically infected. Survival analysis indicated that the cumulative probability of infection by 2 years of age was 28%, and the cumulative probability of clinical infection by 2 years of age was 6%. Titers for clinically and subclinically infected dogs overlapped. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Results suggested that young dogs living in the study area had a high likelihood of becoming infected with Coccidioides spp, but few developed clinical illness. Serologic testing alone was insufficient for a diagnosis of clinical disease because of the overlap in titers between clinically and subclinically infected dogs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1846-1850
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)

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