Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis infection in two Colombian dogs: a note on infectivity for sand flies and response to treatment
Introduction. Although canine cutaneous leishmaniasis has been reported in several foci of South America, no published information from Colombia is available.
Objective. We report on two cases found in the Pacific coast region of this country, which presented as a single scrotal ulcer in one dog, and two ulcers on the external surface of the ear in a second dog.
Materials and methods. Parasites were isolated by culture in Senekjies culture medium and identified using monoclonal antibodies. The capacity of these dogs to transmit the parasites to sand fly vectors (Lutzomyia trapidoi, Lutzomyia gomezi, Lutzomyia longipalpis, Lutzomyia youngi) was tested by allowing the flies to feed on the lesion borders.
Results. Both isolates were identified as Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis. No infections were detected upon dissection of engorged flies. A single peri-and sub-lesional injection of 1-2 ml of pentavalent antimony in the dog with ear lesions resulted in clinical cure 6 weeks post-treatment.
Conclusions. These observations suggest that although dogs are susceptible to L. braziliensis, their reservoir competence could be low. However, if further studies indicate that canines are capable reservoir hosts of L. Viannia spp., the local treatment of lesions could become a feasible approach to diminish the risk of human infection in the peridomestic setting, without sacrificing infected dogs.