Community’s Perception on Zoonotic Potential of Dog Helminthes Infections in Kangemi Slum of Nairobi, Kenya
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Dogs are the most adopted animals as pets worldwide and therefore pose a potential risk for zoonotic diseases due to the close relationship with humans. A cross-sectional study was conducted in Kangemi slum of Nairobi, Kenya between August and October 2016 to assess the community's level of awareness on zoonotic dog intestinal worms. A total of 185 questionnaires were administered; 110 to persons with dogs in their households and 75 to those without. Demographic characteristics analyzed were age, marital status, religion, education level, occupation, and source of drinking water. Among the respondents, 92.7% kept dogs for security purposes and 7.3% as pets. On dog restraint, 53.6% of respondents let their dogs to freely roam in the neighborhood while 46.4% were confined. Most households disposed dog feces either in the nearby bushes (43.6%) or in a pit latrine (30.0%) with 26.4% disposing in the nearby garbage dump. Only 10% of respondents had dewormed the dogs within the last three months of the study, getting drugs mostly (47.8%) from agro-vet shops while 21.6% had knowledge on zoonotic worms. However, 21.6% reported that dog worms cause serious diseases in humans with 58.4% giving deworming as the main strategy of control and or prevention of these worms. Most of the respondents, (89.7%) had knowledge that stray dogs were possible source of infections to humans. 55.7% were for the opinion that stray dogs should be eradicated. The limited knowledge on zoonoses associated with dog helminthes calls for health education and public awareness, to reduce transmission of these worms to humans.
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