Dipylidium spp

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Adult Dipylidium spp tapeworms

Dipylidium spp are a common parasitic tapeworm of dogs worldwide.

This parasite, although usually nonpathogenic, can cause weight loss, and, more rarely, intestinal obstructions. The life cycle of this tapeworm involve fleas such as Ctenocephalides spp, which are inadvertently consumed by dogs during grooming.

Species which are identified in dogs include:

  • Dipylidium caninum[1]

Clinical signs vary from unthriftiness, malaise, polyphagia to mild diarrhea.

Concurrent infections with nematodes and other cestodes is common[2].

Diagnosis is based on finding proglottids or eggs in the feces[3].

Treatment is relatively effective with praziquantel at 7.5 mg/kg.


  1. Nonaka N et al (2011) Coprological survey of alimentary tract parasites in dogs from Zambia and evaluation of a coproantigen assay for canine echinococcosis. Ann Trop Med Parasitol 105(7):521-530
  2. Khalafalla RE et al (2011) A survey study on gastrointestinal parasites of stray cats in northern region of Nile delta, Egypt. PLoS One 6(7):e20283
  3. Gholami I et al' (2011) Seroepidemiological survey of helminthic parasites of stray dogs in Sari City, northern Iran. Pak J Biol Sci 14(2):133-137