These echinostomatid trematodes are small (1 - 2 mm) slender worms with a collar of spines surrounding an oral sucker. . Intermediate hosts include snails, bivalves, and fundulus fish, whereas the definitive hosts are mainly birds and mammals such as dogs.
Dogs become infected by eating infected fish containing infective metacercariae. Adults develop in the dog intestine and eggs are passed, which are eaten by copepods.
Species which have been reported in dogs include:
- Echinochasmus schwartzi
Dogs are usually infected asymptomatically.
Treatment would be effective empirically with praziquantel, given at 5 mg/kg every 4 - 6 weeks.
- Price, EW (1931) Four new species of trematode worms. National Museum of natural history
- Bowman, DD (2009) Georgis' parasitology for veterinarians. 9th edn. Elsevier Saunders, Missouri. pp:322
- Huffman JE & Fried B (2012) The biology of Echinoparyphium (Trematoda, Echinostomatidae). Acta Parasitol 57(3):199-210
- Santiago Bass C & Weis JS (2009) Conspicuous behaviour of Fundulus heteroclitus associated with high digenean metacercariae gill abundances. J Fish Biol 74(4):763-772