Echinococcus granulosus

Last Modified: Thu, 22 Jun 2023 14:40:54 IST
Disease name Echinococcus granulosus
Animal Health Law Category if applicable N/A
Species affected Multiple(not specified)
Description Echinococcus granulosus sensu lato is an umbrella term for several different but closely related species of tapeworm. For the species of importance for domestic animals, the dog is the definitive host. The most important species in a European context include Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (sheep strain genotypes 1-3) and Echinococcus ortleppi (cattle strain genotype 5), both of which have sheep, goats and cattle as intermediate hosts; and also Echinococcus equinus (horse strain genotype 4), which has horses and donkeys as intermediate hosts. Both intermediate and final stages are usually well tolerated without any clinical signs by both domestic and wild animals, and generally only become apparent on post-mortem examination. Man is sometimes infected with the intermediate stage as an accidental host. Such human infections are often associated with severe symptoms, including respiratory difficulties and abdominal distension. Echinococcus equinus (horse strain G4) has been reported in Ireland in the past. Echinococcus granulosus, as defined in the OIE terrestrial code (ovine, bovine, cervid, camelid and porcine strains), has never been reported in Ireland and is considered to be absent.
Status in Ireland Absent
Date of Last known case of disease in Ireland Never reported
DAFM Division Responsible Bacteriology/ Parasitology

EUR-Lex - 32016R0429 - EN - EUR-Lex (

Link to relevant external website
Notifiable in Ireland No
WOAH Listed Yes