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September 24 2013
A dog mummy has revealed the first archaeological evidence of bloodsucking parasites plaguing Fido's ancestors in Egypt during the classical era of Roman rule.
The preserved parasites discovered in the mummified young dog's right ear and coat include the common brown tick and louse fly — tiny nuisances that may have carried diseases leading to the puppy's early demise. French archaeologists found the infested dog mummy while studying hundreds of mummified dogs at the excavation site of El Deir in Egypt, during expeditions in 2010 and 2011.
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