Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz, Rio de Janeiro, VOLUME 115 | FEBRUARY 2020
A cross-sectional approach including owners´ characteristics as predictors of infection of visceral leishmaniasis in dogs [ACCEPTED ARTICLES / PRELIMINARY VERSION]
1 Núcleo de Medicina Tropical, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de Brasília, Brasília, Distrito Federal, Brasil
2 Secretaria de Vigilância Epidemiológica, Ministério da Saúde, Brasília, Distrito Federal, Brasil
BACKGROUND Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is relevant for human and animal public health. Some factors have been associated to the risk of Leishmania infantum infection in dogs. However dog ́s owners characteristics have been rarely explored.
OBJECTIVES To estimate the prevalence and to identify the associated factors for VL infection including dogs ́ owners characteristics.
METHODS A cross sectional study was conducted in dogs from an endemic region CVL in the Federal District, Brazil. Infection was detected by the application of parasitological, serological, and molecular methods. The associated factors were identified through Poisson regression modelling.
FINDINGS The prevalence of infection was 26.25% (95%CI: 20.05 to 33.57). The associated factors were: short coat PR=2.33 (95%CI 1.02- 5.22); presence of backyard with predominance of soil and/or vegetation PR=4.15 (95%CI 1.35-12.77); and highest gross family income score PR=2.03 (95%CI 1.16-3.54).
MAIN CONCLUSION This is the first study that relates higher socioeconomic status of dog owners as an independent factor associated to higher prevalence of VL infection, along with other strongly associated factor related to receptive environment for phlebotomines. Our findings strength the need of exploration of the biological and behavioral bases linking the owner’s characteristics to the risk of canine infection in prospective cohort studies.