We examined 31 free-ranging coyotes (Canis latrans) from central Georgia, USA, for select parasites and viral agents. Sixteen coyotes had adult heartworms (Dirofilaria immitis). Serum samples from 27 animals revealed antibodies against canine parvovirus (100%), canine distemper virus (48%), canine adenovirus (37%), and Trypanosoma cruzi (7%); none were detected against Leishmania spp. Twenty-two of 24 (92%) coyotes were positive for Toxoplasma gondii. Real-time PCR of feces revealed 32% of coyotes were shedding canine parvovirus, and sequencing revealed type 2b and 2c. Because coyotes could be a spillover host of domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris) pathogens, studies of the transmission of pathogens between coyotes and domestic dogs are warranted.
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Vol. 50 • No. 4