Wolves (Canis lupus) were captured in three areas of Interior Alaska (USA). Four hundred twenty-five sera were tested for evidence of exposure to canine coronavirus by means of an indirect fluorescent antibody procedure. Serum antibody prevalence averaged 70% (167/240) during the spring collection period and 25% (46/185) during the autumn collection period. Prevalence was 0% (0/42) in the autumn pup cohort (age 4–5 mo), and 60% (58/97) in the spring pup cohort (age 9–10 mo). Prevalence was lowest in the Eastern Interior study area. A statistical model indicates that prevalence increased slightly each year in all three study areas. These results indicate that transmission occurs primarily during the winter months, antibody decay is quite rapid, and reexposure during the summer is rare.
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Vol. 37 • No. 4