The role that animals play in the transmission of Schistosoma japonicum to humans in the Philippines remains uncertain and prior studies have not included several species, adjustment for misclassification error and clustering, or used a cohort design. A cohort study of 2468 people providing stool samples at 12 months following praziquantel treatment in 50 villages of Western Samar, the Philippines, was conducted. Stool samples from dogs, cats, rats, and water buffaloes were collected at baseline (2003–2004) and follow-up (2005). Latent-class hierarchical Bayesian log-binomial models adjusting for misclassification errors in diagnostic tests were used. The village-level baseline and follow-up prevalences of cat, dog, and rat S. japonicum infection were associated with the 12-month cumulative incidence of human S. japonicum infection, with similar magnitude and precision of effect, but correlation between infection levels made it difficult to divide their respective effects. The cumulative incidence ratios associated with a 1% increase in the prevalence of infection in dogs at baseline and in rats at follow-up were 1·04 [95% Bayesian credible interval (BCI) 1·02–1·07] and 1·02 (95% BCI 1·01–1·04), respectively, when both species were entered in the model. Dogs appear to play a role in human schistosomiasis infection while rats could be used as schistosomiasis sentinels.