In the present work, we have analyzed the antigenicity of Leishmania species ribosomal proteins (LRPs). To accomplish this, Leishmania infantum ribosomes were biochemically purified from promastigote cytosolic extracts, and their reactivities were analyzed by using the sera from dogs naturally infected with L. infantum. Since antibodies reacting against different ribosomal proteins were observed in all the serum samples obtained from dogs with symptomatic visceral leishmaniasis tested, we have analyzed the potential usefulness of the LRP extracts in the development of an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the serodiagnosis of canine visceral leishmaniasis (CVL) in an area of Brazil where visceral leishmaniasis is endemic due to infection by Leishmania chagasi. A comparative ELISA with crude soluble Leishmania chagasi antigen (SLA) and L. infantum LRPs was performed. LRP- and SLA-based ELISAs gave similar sensitivities for the diagnosis of symptomatic CVL, but the LRP extract provided a very high sensitivity for the detection of oligosymptomatic and asymptomatic dogs. In addition, an LRP-based ELISA showed a higher specificity when the sera from dogs harboring other infections were included in the analysis. The LRP antigen displayed no cross-reactivity with sera from dogs that had any of the other diseases tested, notably, Chagas' disease. Our findings suggest that LRPs are a potential tool for the diagnosis of CVL and will be particularly useful for the diagnosis of asymptomatic CVL.