Cestodes or tapeworms are one of the most common parasites of dogs.
Cestodes that affect dogs have two basic life cycles, one involving an aquatic environment for early larval stages, and the second utilizing various vertebrate hosts such as fish, amphibians, reptiles and mammals. Some cestodes do not use intermediate hosts in aquatic environments and use terrestrial hosts, such as Dipylidium spp, which uses fleas.
In all cases, dogs become infected by eating intermediate hosts which contain larval stages of the cestode, where it grows into an adult and lives primarily in the duodenum and jejunum.
Treatment is effective with oral praziquantel.
Cestodes which have been documented to infect dogs include:
|Parasite||Location in dog||Intermediate hosts||Geographical distribution|
|Diphyllobothrium latum||duodenum, jejunum||fish||Europe, Japan, North America|
|Diplopylidium acanthotetra||duodenum, jejunum||coprophagous insects, lizard||Southern Europe, Middle East|
|Dipylidium caninum||duodenum, jejunum||flea larva||Worldwide|
|Echinococcus granulosus||duodenum, jejunum||rodent||Holarctic|
|Joyeuxiella pasqualei||duodenum, jejunum||lizard||Southern Europe, Middle East, Asia|
|Mesocestoides lineatus||duodenum, jejunum||Amphibia, reptiles, rodents, birds||Worldwide|
|Spirometra mansonoides||small intestine, sparganosis||amphibians, reptiles, rodents, birds||Worldwide|
|Taenia taeniaeformis||small intestine, coenurosis||rodents||worldwide|
- Bowman, DD et al (2003) Feline clinical parasitology. Iowa University Press, Iowa. pp:184