Great Basin Naturalist


A questionnaire survey was conducted in Sanpete County, Utah, to determine the knowledge of dog owners concerning hydatid disease and an identification of some basic sheep management practices there. The households surveyed included 21 (Group I) that had one or more dogs infected with Echinococcus granulosus tapeworms at more than one annual field clinic, and 19 others (Group II) that had one or more dogs infected when the study first began in 1971–72, but had not had any infected dogs identified at field clinics during subsequent years. The results showed that 92.5 percent of households knew the cause of the disease and how it is transmitted, and that 90 percent knew of someone who had been operated on for surgical removal of hydatid cysts. There was no significant difference in the level of knowledge of the disease between the two groups of respondents, nor in their sheep management practices. Even though the level of infection of the parasite in dogs has decreased since the project started, certain sheep management practices persist among respondents in both groups that allow for continued transmission of the parasite in this region.