Study of canine ringworm epidemiology in Thessaloniki area


The presence of dermatophytes in animals with skin lesions (ringworm), as well as in animals with apparently healthy skin (healthy carriers) and in soil specimens was investigated. Skin scales and infected hair from 480 dogs with lesions were examined microscopically by using 20% KOH and by the methylene blue stain. Specimens were also inoculated in Sabouraud-chloramphenicolcycloheximide agar. Hairbrush technique was performed in 500 dogs with apparently healthy skin (330 of the urban and 170 of the rural area). 92 soil specimens were cultured by the hairbaiting method. Dermatophytes were isolated from 220 (40,8%) dogs with skin lesions. M. canis was isolated from the 87,7% of the dogs. M. gypseum from 7,2%, T. mentagrophytes from 4,5% and T. rubrum from 0,4%. Most of the infected animals (148) were up to 24 months old and 140 of them belonged to short coat breeds. From the 330 and the 170 apparently healthy dogs 38 (14,5%) and 35 (20,5%) were found carrying dermatophytes, respectively. M. canis was exclusively isolated from the dogs of the urban area. The most frequent dermatophyte isolated from the dogs of the rural area was M. gypseum, while T. terrestre and T. mentagrophytes were the second and the third isolated. From 30 soil specimens of the urban area and from 62 of the rural area, 25 (83%) and 56 (90,3%) strains of dermatophytes were isolated respectively. M. gypseum was the most frequent isolated of both areas. Representative dermatophytes, 2 strains of T. mentagrophytes and 2 of M. gypseum, isolated from the coat of animals with apparently healthy skin and from the soil proved to be pathogenic for laboratory animals. It is mentioned that M. canis implicated in public health because of its transmission to human and of the numerous cases of the animals owners affected.

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