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Strongyliasis Occurs in Epidemic Proportion amongst other Nematodiasis and Cestodiasis of Horses (Equus caballus) in Obollo-Afor Southeastern Nigeria

Strongyliasis Occurs in Epidemic Proportion amongst other Nematodiasis and Cestodiasis of Horses (Equus caballus) in Obollo-Afor Southeastern Nigeria

Uzochukwu Ephraim Emeto, Chukwuemeka Calistus Okolo* and Nwakaego Ernestina Nweze

Department of Veterinary Medicine, University of Nigeria, Nigeria.

ABSTRACT

Nematodiasis and cestodiasis perpetrate serious health and welfare challenges on horses. In countries such as Nigeria, where control of these endoparasites relies on periodic use of anthelminthics, epidemiological evaluations are necessary for deploying meaningful intervention strategies. Such investigations are lacking in the region; hence, the occurrence, risk-factors and nature of cestodiasis and nematodiasis of horses at Obollo-Afor southeastern Nigeria were investigated. Horses billed for slaughter were randomly selected (N = 304) for sampling. About 5grams of faeces and 2ml of blood were collected from each horse into labeled containers for faecal floatation test and haematocrit determination. Gender and body condition scores (BCS) of horses were noted, while age groups and body weight were estimated by dentition and normogram methods respectively. The results showed that 89.9% [confidence interval (CI) 86.4%, 93.4%] of the horses harboured gastrointestinal endoparasites including strongyles (81.3%), Parascaris equorum (8.2%), Oxyuris equi (21.1%), Strongyloides westeri (13.5%), Anoplocephala spp. (10.2%) Paranoplocephala mamillana (3.6%). Polyparasitism was prevalent (43.4%, CI 37.8%, 49.0%). Associations existing between age groups or gender, and the presence of endoparasites were only random. Presence of endoparasite and BCS showed significant (p < 0.05) associations. Horses infected with endoparasites had similar haematocrit values but significantly lower mean body weights when compared to uninfected horses. The study gives the identities and prevalence rates of nematodes and cestodes affecting the horse population. Strongyliasis occured in epidemic proportion within the horse population in the area. This underscores the need for review of extant treatment and control programs.

 

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Veterinary Sciences: Research and Reviews

June

Vol. 8, Iss. 1, Pages 1-70

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