Journal of the South African Veterinary Association
On-line version ISSN 2224-9435
Print version ISSN 1019-9128
ERLWANGER, K H et al. Hepatic capillariasis in a Cape ground squirrel (Xerus inaurus). J. S. Afr. Vet. Assoc. [online]. 2009, vol.80, n.4, pp.276-277. ISSN 2224-9435.
We report, for the first time, an incidental finding of Calodium hepaticum infestation in a sub-adult female Cape ground squirrel (Xerus inaurus). Post mortem examination of the squirrel revealed severe haemoperitoneum, splenomegaly and hepatomegaly with miliary white spots distributed diffusely throughout the hepatic parenchyma. Histologically the portal tracts in the liver showed granulomatous inflammation with fibrosis and numerous giant cells. Occasional adult worms were identified and there were multiple C. hepaticum eggs distributed diffusely throughout the portal tracts and the parenchyma. The spleen also contained C. hepaticum eggs. The genus Rattus is the primary host and reservoir of C. hepaticum, but C. hepaticum infections have been reported previously in other Sciuridae. Based on our findings, people should be cautious of the zoonotic potential of C. hepaticum, when they come into contact with the Cape ground squirrel.
Keywords : Calodium hepaticum; Cape ground squirrel; capillariasis.