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Tadeusz Moczon moczon at twarda.pan.pl
Thu Mar 16 15:13:54 EST 2000

Lynn303 wrote:
> Can you please answer a question? Is there any type of parasite or eggs that
> look like sesame seeds? My entire family is cleansing including the animals. In
> the dogs stool we found numorous white creamy colored things.That look like
> sesame seeds. To my knowledge she has not eaten anything but dog food. Can you
> e-mail me back at Lynn303.
The above description indicates that your dog is infected with the
cestode Dipylidium caninum. Visit a veterinarian. A single dose of an
anticestodal drug will kill the parasite.
An intermediate host of this flatworm is canine flea. Infected fleas
bear larvae of the worm in their body cavity. Your dog must had broken
an infected flea with its teeth and swallow it together with the
parasite larva(e). The larva has developed within the dog's gut into the
mature cestode. Now the dog spreads the "sesam-like" fragments of the
cestode body over your house. Each fragment comprise many eggs of the
parasite. Larvae of fleas which live in carpets and slits in the floor
eat the "sesam seeds" and become infected. Following pupation and
emergence from pupal carapace, mature (still infected) fleas attack
dogs, then lay eggs. Dogs bite fleas with their teeth, swallow them
and... the life cycle of the parasite becomes closed. Since it is
possible that a flea female has laid eggs somewhere in your house, clean
the house perfectly by means of a vacuum cleaner to remove flea larvae.
Do not spray insecticides which could haevily intoxicate your dog.

P.S. The parasite is host-specific. People do not eat infected fleas.

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