Fox Lungworm

Adult fox lungworms (Crenosoma vulpis) live in the trachea, bronchi and bronchioles (upper
airways) of dogs, foxes and other wild canids.

  • Adult males are 3.5 to 8 mm long and the females are 12 to 16 mm long.
  • Adult females produce eggs which hatch into larvae (young lungworm) which are coughed
    up and then swallowed. The larvae pass through the dog's digestive tract and are released
    into the environment via the animal's feces.
  • In the environment, larvae (young lungworms) are able to infect snails and slugs
  • Dogs are infected with lungworm when they eat slugs or snails containing the lungworm
  • Inside the dog, the young lungworms penetrate the stomach wall and migrate to the dog's
    airways via the circulatory system. Within the dog's upper airways, the lungworm larvae
    mature into adults.
  • The presence of adult lungworm in the upper airways cause irritation and inflammation
    and may cause the dog to cough.

How will Fox Lungworm affect a dog?

  • Disease in dogs is usually related to the respiratory system, and symptoms can include
    coughing, difficulty breathing, discharge from the nose and retching
  • C. vulpis infections are rarely fatal in dogs

Can Fox Lungworm affect a human?

Crenosoma vulpis is not considered a disease risk to people

View the life cycle of the Fox Lungworm.

View the life cycle of the fox lungworm

To see the life cycle of lungworm, click here.