Tick Infestation and Spotted-Fever Group Rickettsia in Shelter Dogs, California, 2009


C. L. Fritz. Division of Communicable Disease Control, California Department of Public Health, 1616 Capitol Ave, MS 7307, P.O. Box 997377, Sacramento, CA 95899-7377, USA. Tel.: +1 916 552 9730; Fax: +1 916 552 9725; E-mail: cfritz@cdph.ca.gov


In response to an outbreak of Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) in Baja California in early 2009, dogs at two shelters in neighbouring Imperial County, California, were evaluated for ectoparasites. Brown dog ticks (Rhipicephalus sanguineus), a recognized vector for RMSF, were found on 35 (30%) of 116 dogs but all ticks tested negative for Rickettsia rickettsii by PCR.