Raccoons and raccoon dogs : infested with parasites
So far, about 350 raccoons from nature reserves, urban and rural areas have been examined nutritionally and parasitologically in the joint research project ZOWIAC and about 200 additional blood samples have been analyzed. Also 95 raccoon dogs and 50 mink were examined. Genetic analyses showed, among other things, that raccoon dogs can serve as reservoir hosts for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. Protozoan and metazoan parasites also feel at home in the predators. Twenty-two different species of parasites have been detected in the raccoons studied, four of which can infect humans. These include the raccoon roundworm, which was found in 95 percent of the animals. In raccoon dogs, scientists have so far identified 18 parasite species, including lung hairworm and fox tapeworm.