Review Article

Vector-borne diseases of small companion animals in Namibia: Literature review, knowledge gaps and opportunity for a One Health approach

Bruce H. Noden, Minty Soni
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 86, No 1 | a1307 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jsava.v86i1.1307 | © 2015 Bruce H. Noden, Minty Soni | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 19 May 2015 | Published: 06 November 2015

About the author(s)

Bruce H. Noden, Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, Oklahoma State University, United States
Minty Soni, Rhino Park Veterinary Clinic, Windhoek, Namibia


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Abstract

Namibia has a rich history in veterinary health but little is known about the vector-borne diseases that affect companion dogs and cats. The aim of this review is to summarise the existing published and available unpublished literature, put it into a wider geographical context, and explore some significant knowledge gaps. To date, only two filarial pathogens (Dirofilaria repens and Acanthocheilonema dracunculoides) and three tick-borne pathogens (Babesia canis vogeli, Hepatozoon canis and Ehrlichia canis) have been reported. Most studies have focused solely on dogs and cats in the urban Windhoek and surrounding areas, with almost nothing reported in rural farming areas, in either the populous northern regions or the low-income urban areas where animal owners have limited access to veterinary services. With the development of several biomedical training programmes in the country, there is now an excellent opportunity to address zoonotic vector-borne diseases through a One Health approach so as to assess the risks to small companion animals as well as diseases of public health importance.

Keywords

Vector-borne disease; tick; mosquito; flea; sandfly; canine, feline

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