Background Echinococcosis is highly endemic in western and northern China, Tibet Autonomous Region ( TAR) is the most serious prevalent area . Linzhi is located in southeastern part of TAR. Dogs are the main infection source for the transmission of echinococcosis to humans. A control and prevention campaign based on dog management has been conducted in the past three years. This study is to evaluate the effects of dog management on infection rate of dogs.
Methods Data of dog population, registration and de-worming of seven counties/district in Linzhi were collected from the annual prevention and control report. Domestic dog fecal samples were collected from each endemic town of seven counties/district in Linzhi in 2019 to determine the infection of domestic dogs using coproantigen ELISA. Data analysis was processed using SPSS statistics to compare dog infection rate between 2016 and 2019 by chi-square test, and maps were mapped using ArcGIS.
Results In Linzhi, domestic dog population has decreased from 17407 in 2017, 16512 in 2018, to 12663 in 2019, while the registration rate has increased from 75.9% in 2017, 95.5% in 2018, to 98.6% in 2019. Similarly, stray dog population has decreased from 14336 in 2017, 13067 in 2018, to 11837 in 2019, while sheltered rate has increased from 84.6% in 2017, 92.3% in 2018, to 96.6% in 2019. Dog de-worming frequency has increased from four times per annum in 2017 to 12 times in 2019, indicating that approximately every dog was dewormed monthly. A total number of 2715 dog fecal samples were collected for coproantigen ELISA assay. The dog infection rate was 2.8% (77/2715) in 2019, which was significantly lower than7.3% (45/618) in 2016 (P<0.05).
Conclusions Increased dog registration, decreased dog population, and increased dog de-worming frequency contributed to significantly decreased dog infection rate in Linzhi, TAR. Control and prevention campaign based on dog management can significantly decrease dog infection with Echinococcus spp in echinococcosis endemic areas.