Ethiopia

Seasonal variation of strongylosis in working donkeys of Ethiopia: a cross-sectional and longitudinal studies

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Publication details
Publication date: 
24 May 2017
Page numbers: 
1-7
DOI number: 
10.1007/s00436-017-5485-z
Abstract

Helminths are one of the major health problems of working donkeys, often with heavy worm burden and contributing to their early demise and/or reduction in their work output. Cross-sectional and longitudinal studies were conducted to investigate the current infection prevalence and level of strongyles infection donkeys would acquire through different seasons in the mid-lowland agro-ecological zones of Ethiopia. For this purpose, faecal samples from 206 (cross-sectional study) and 102 (longitudinal study) randomly selected donkeys were directly collected from the rectum and analysed. For the longitudinal study, the 102 donkeys dewormed at the end of main rainy season, beginning of October, were monitored for the level of strongyle infection they would acquire during subsequent dry and short rainy seasons. The cross-sectional study of 206 donkey has revealed an overall infection prevalence of 89.3% (95% confidence interval (CI) = 84.4, 92.9). Donkeys in the lowland zone showed a significantly higher strongyle infection prevalence (P = 0.0126) and mean eggs per gramme of faces (EPG) (P = 0.001; 2775 EPG) compared to donkeys in the midland zone (980.8 EPG). Age, sex and body condition did not have any significant effect on either the infection prevalence or level of infection (P > 0.05). The longitudinal study has shown a significantly lower strongyle infection prevalence (P = 0.003) and level of infection donkeys acquired (P = 0.001) in the subsequent dry and short rainy seasons compared to the main rainy season following October deworming. However, these values were not significantly different between the two agro-ecological zones (P > 0.05). This study clearly showed that parasitic infections are primarily acquired during the main rainy season when pasture/herbage coverage is relatively better, and the environment is conducive for parasites survival and development. On the other hand, the finding of majority of donkeys shedding low or no eggs during the dry and short rainy seasons showed that October deworming was effective, and donkeys acquire low or no parasitic infection during the subsequent dry and short rainy seasons. Therefore, the practice of anthelmintic treatment of donkeys at the end of short rain in May may not be necessary, and October deworming once a year is sufficient.

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The prevalence of lameness and associated risk factors in cart mules in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

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Alina Ali, Solomon Orion, Tewodros Tesfaye, Jennifer A. Zambriski. September 2016. The prevalence of lameness and associated risk factors in cart mules in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia. Tropical Animal Health and Production.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
1 September 2016
DOI number: 
10.1007/s11250-016-1121-7
Abstract

Ethiopia has 7.1 million donkeys and mules, the majority of which are used as pack animals. Factors such as poor harness quality, long-distance traveling, and heavy cartloads have been linked to reduced work efficiency. Addressing the health and welfare of working equids is imperative not only for the animals but also for the households dependent upon them for livelihood. In developing countries, 75 % of working equids have gait or limb abnormalities, but the relationship between workload and prevalence of lameness is unknown. We examined 450 cart mules in Bahir Dar,
Ethiopia. Lameness and workload were assessed through use of a survey and lameness exam. We found that 26.8 % of cart mules were lame, and acute lameness of the forelimb was the most common. Animals with poor harness quality were 2.5 times more likely to have sores and 1.6 times more likely to be lame. Lameness tended to be associated with cartloads >700 kg (P = 0.09), and there was a significant association
between multiple-leg lameness and cartload weight (P = 0.03). The presence of sores was the best predictor of lameness (P = 0.001). Possible areas of intervention may include education to reduce average daily workload and improving harness design.

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A Neglected and Emerging Helminthosis: A Case of Equine Fasciolosis

Citation

Mulugeta Getachew, Giles T. Innocent, Stuart W. Reid, Faith A. Burden, Sandy Love. September 2015. A Neglected and Emerging Helminthosis: A Case of Equine Fasciolosis. Equine Veterinary Journal. 47:S48. 21.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
6 September 2015
Volume: 
47
Issue: 
S48
Page numbers: 
21
DOI number: 
10.1111/evj.12486_47
Abstract

Reasons for performing study
Although fasciolosis is an important livestock disease worldwide, the public health importance of human fasciolosis has increased in recent years and it is recognised as an important re-emerging zoonotic disease, its epidemiology and pathogenicity in donkeys, and the epidemiological role they may play have not been determined.

Objectives
To investigate the epidemiology and pathogenicity of fasciolosis in donkeys.

Study design
Cross-sectional coprological and retrospective post-mortem study.

Methods
Faecal samples collected from 803 randomly selected working donkeys from the central region of Ethiopia were analysed by a sedimentation-centrifugation-flotation technique. Further data on liver-flukes and associated pathologies were obtained by routine post mortem examinations of 112 donkeys, subjected to euthanasia on welfare grounds or died. Data were analysed using a generalised linear model and multivariate binary logistic regression in R statistical package with significance level of statistical tests set at P<0.05.

Results
Infection prevalences of 44.4% and 41.9% were obtained in coprologically and post mortem examined donkeys, respectively, irrespective of their age. Both Fasciola hepatica and Fasciola gigantica were identified with the mean infection intensity of 30 flukes. Older donkeys (≥8 years) were found harbouring a significantly higher worm burden (P<0.0001). Gross and histopathologies of hyperplasia and thickening of the bile ducts, fibrosis of large portal areas and irregular bile duct proliferation and hypertrophy were noted.

Conclusions
The high infection prevalence of fasciolosis and the associated hepatic pathologies in working donkeys shows not only the susceptibility of donkeys and the impact it has on their health, but also indicates the important role they can play in the epidemiology of both livestock and human fasciolosis. These further demonstrate the need for these animals to be considered in the overall epidemiological studies and for sound control strategies and prevention of fasciolosis.

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The evaluation of ethnoveterinary medicines for treating gastrointestinal nematodes in working equids

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Presentation details
Date presented: 
Wednesday 2 July 2014
Abstract

Introduction: Herbal medicines have been used in human and animal medicine for centuries to treat parasitic diseases; few examples have been investigated for genuine anti-parasitic activity. In developing countries access to effective anthelmintic treatment for livestock is often limited by cost, availability and variable quality. Reports of resistance to benzimadazoles in ruminants in Ethiopia serve as a warning that anthelmintic resistance may also be an emerging problem [1,2]. In light of these issues there is increasing interest in plant remedies as alternatives to synthetic anthelmintics. This study used a participatory rural appraisal (PRA) to identify plants with potential anthelmintic activity in the Oromia region of Ethiopia; five plant extracts were shortlisted and tested for efficacy against cyathostomins using in vitro assays. Current attitudes to ethnoveterinary medicine were discussed.

Methods: Focus group discussions with 29 groups of donkey owners from the Oromia region of Ethiopia explored the use of plants to treat GI parasites in livestock. Current attitudes to herbal medicines were discussed and recorded using thematic analysis. Plants of interest were collected and identified at the National Herbarium, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Plants were shortlisted for in vitro tests based on four criteria; ranking in the PRA, supportive literature, no evidence of toxicity and availability. Hydro-alcoholic extraction of dried plant material from shortlisted species was performed. The efficacy of extracts was evaluated in the egg hatch assay (EHA) using cyathostomin eggs recovered from the faeces of donkeys at the Donkey Sanctuary, UK. Dose response curves were produced and ED-50 values calculated using probit analysis.

Results: The focus groups identified 21 plants used as anthelmintics in livestock. A general move away from traditional medicines in the younger generation was observed, although when asked if they would use plants in future many would consider this if they had been tested scientifically and were approved by professionals. The five plants shortlisted for in vitro analysis were Acacia nilotica, Cucumis prophetarum, Rumex abysinnicus, Vernonia amygdalinia and Withania somnifera. Three showed efficacy in the EHA; Acacia nilotica, Cucumis prophetarum and Rumex abysinnicus , with EC-50 values of 0.7, 1.1 and 1.3mg/ml respectively.

Conclusion: Three out of five of the plants identified in the PRA showed efficacy in vitro suggesting that plant remedies used by livestock owners in the Oromia region of Ethiopia may contain compounds with genuine anthelmintic activity. Evaluation of current attitudes suggests that plant remedies are not used unless there is no other option, but that they would be considered should scientific evidence of efficacy and safety be presented to them by animal health professionals [3]. It is therefore essential that a randomised controlled trial is used to verify whether in vitro anthelmintic activity can be translated in vivo and thus whether the plants identified in this study have potential as safe alternatives to synthetic anthelmintic drugs. This study has highlighted that local practices pertaining to the health of working equids are a rich source of information that may help to inform sustainable and effective treatment strategies in future.

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Participatory study of medicinal plants used in the control of gastrointestinal parasites in donkeys in Eastern Shewa and Arsi zones of Oromia region, Ethiopia

Citation

Claire Scantlebury, Laura Peachey, Jane Hodgkinson, Jacqui. B. Matthews, Andrew F. Trawford, Mulugeta Getachew, Gebre Tefera, Gina L. Pinchbeck. September 2013. Participatory study of medicinal plants used in the control of gastrointestinal parasites in donkeys in Eastern Shewa and Arsi zones of Oromia region, Ethiopia. BMC Veterinary Research. 9:179. 1-12.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
1 September 2013
Volume: 
9
Issue: 
179
Page numbers: 
1-12
DOI number: 
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-9-179
Abstract

Background

Gastrointestinal nematode infections constitute a threat to the health and welfare of donkeys worldwide. Their primary means of control is via anthelmintic treatments; however, use of these drugs has constraints in developing countries, including cost, limited availability, access to cheaper generic forms of variable quality and potential anthelmintic resistance. As an alternative, bioactive plants have been proposed as an option to treat and control gastrointestinal helminths in donkeys. This study aimed to use participatory methodology to explore donkey owner knowledge, attitudes and beliefs relating to the use of plant-based treatments for gastrointestinal parasites of donkeys in Ethiopia.

Results

In focus groups, 22/29 groups stated they knew of plants used for the treatment of gastrointestinal parasites in donkeys. All groups volunteered plants that were used in cattle and/or small ruminants. In total, 21 plants were named by participants. ‘Koso’ (Hagenia abyssinica) ‘Grawa’ (Vernonia amygdalina) and a mixed roots and leaves preparation were the most frequently named plant preparations. ‘Enkoko’ (Embelia shimperi) and ‘a mixture of roots and leaves’ were ranked highly for effectiveness in donkeys. However, ‘Grawa’ and ‘Koso’ were the highest ranked when taking into account both the rank position and the number of groups ranking the plant.

Thematic analysis of participants’ current attitudes and beliefs surrounding traditional plant-based remedies for gastrointestinal parasites revealed that anthelmintics obtained from clinics were generally favoured due to their ease of administration and perceived higher effectiveness. There was doubt surrounding the effectiveness of some plant-based treatments, but there were also perceived advantages including their low cost, ease of cultivation and availability. However, plant-based treatments were considered a “past trend” and people favoured “modern” medicine, particularly among the younger generation.

Conclusions

There was extensive knowledge of plant-based treatments for gastrointestinal parasites in livestock in Ethiopia. In donkeys, Koso (Hagenia abyssinica), Grawa (Vernonia amygdalina), Enkoko (Embelia shimperi) and ‘mixed roots and leaves’ were the most frequently named and/or highest ranked plants with reported efficacy against gastrointestinal parasites. Further in vitro and in vivo investigation of these plants is now required to determine viable alternatives for the treatment and control of gastrointestinal parasites in Ethiopia.

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The impact of access to animal health services on donkey health and livelihoods in Ethiopia

Citation

M. Martin Curran, Feseha Gebreab, David G. Smith. The impact of access to animal health services on donkey health and livelihoods in Ethiopia. Tropical Animal Health and Production. 37:1. 47-65.

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Publication details
Volume: 
37
Issue: 
1
Page numbers: 
47-65
DOI number: 
10.1007/s11250-005-9008-z
Abstract

This study was carried out to assess the impact of animal healthcare services on poor donkey owners in Ethiopia. The services provided by the Donkey Sanctuary were used as a case study. A questionnaire survey was designed and carried out in the areas around Debre Zeit in the Highlands of Ethiopia. The staff carried out a survey at 10 sites. Six of these were in Donkey Sanctuary project areas and four were in control areas. The results showed that in project areas donkeys were significantly healthier and more productive than in non-project areas. Donkey owners in project sites felt better off for having access to animal healthcare services; donkey owners in non-project sites were less confident about their incomes and the health of their animals.

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Determination of refernce haematological and serum-biochemical values for working donkeys of Ethiopia

Citation

K. Etana, T. Jenbere, E. Bojia, Haileleul Negussie. January 2011. Determination of refernce haematological and serum-biochemical values for working donkeys of Ethiopia. Veterinary Research. 4:3. 90-94.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
1 January 2011
Journal: 
Veterinary Research
Volume: 
4
Issue: 
3
Page numbers: 
90-94
DOI number: 
10.3923/vr.2011.90.94
Abstract

This study was undertaken with the aim of determining reference hematological and serobiochemical values for working Ethiopian donkeys in four districts of Oromia regional state. The study was conducted by taking blood and serum samples from a total of 130 apparently healthy donkeys which were analyzed by using automated hematology analyzer and photometer 5010, respectively. There were significant difference in RBC (p<0.001), PCV (p<0.04), MCV (p<0.001) and MCHC (p<0.001) among the different age groups. The differences in mean values for PCV, Hb, MCV, MCHC, MCH, Hb, total WBC, eosinophils, monocytes and Platelets between sexes were not statistically significant (p>0.05). In the serobiochemical studies significant difference was seen only in the mean creatinine (p<0.003) values among the different age groups. Therefore, the variations in hematological and serum biochemical values ascribed to the effects of age and sex should be taken into consideration in interpreting physiological hematological and serum biochemical parameters in working donkeys.

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Cutaneous histoplasmosis in 13 Ethiopian donkeys

Citation

R. Keith Powell, Nick J. Bell, T. Abreha, K. Asmamaw, H. Bekelle, T. Daiwit, K. Itsay, Feseha Gebreab. June 2006. Cutaneous histoplasmosis in 13 Ethiopian donkeys. The Veterinary Record. 158. 836-837.

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Publication details
Publication date: 
17 June 2006
Volume: 
158
Page numbers: 
836-837
DOI number: 
10.1136/vr.158.24.836
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