Repelling ticks before they bite is essential: APVMA grants emergency permit for Seresto to reduce the transmission of Ehrlichia canis to dogs by brown dog ticks

Australia, 24 June 2021: While Covid 19 has dominated our thoughts and headlines over the last year, the arrival of Ehrlichia canis (or “ehrlichiosis”) has been devastating dog populations in northern Australia and is spreading rapidly across the country. As more pets than ever join family holidays and cross borders, preventing its spread is critical. The APVMA has granted an emergency permit to Seresto to help reduce transmission of this notifiable disease.

Since first detected in May 2020, ehrlichiosis has been confirmed in over 500 dogs across northern Australia and some parts of South Australia and New South Wales. Numbers are likely to be an underestimate as veterinary access to the worst affected regions has been difficult. According to  veterinary technical expertsi, this means many dogs have died without testing or treatment.

The disease is caused by a bacterium, Ehrlichia canis, spread between dogs by the brown dog tick (R. sanguineus). Unlike some other tick-borne diseases, Ehrlichia canis can be transmitted rapidly – within three hours of a single tick bite.

Repelling ticks before they bite is therefore essential. That’s why the APVMA has granted a permit (APVMA; PER90869) allowing the Seresto Collar for Dogs to be used to “reduce the transmission of the tick-borne disease caused by the pathogen Ehrlichia canis, thereby reducing the risk of transmission of canine ehrlichiosis between dogs by brown dog ticks”.

While most tick products that rely on ticks biting the treated dog are highly effective at killing ticks, studies have shown that topically-acting products that repel ticks are essential to prevent infection.

All tick protection products have an important role to play in preventing infected ticks from spreading, but only a small handful of products can prevent ticks from biting.

Seresto for Dogs is a long-lasting, water-resistant collar containing imidacloprid and flumethrin that repels ticks and kill fleas and ticks on contact. Seresto is registered to reduce the risk of transmission of two other tick-borne diseases known to infect Australian dogs, anaplasmosis and babesiosis.

Studies have shown that Seresto also reduces the transmission of Ehrlichia canis in dogs. This is a registered product claim in other countries.

For more details about Ehrlichiosis, contact your State Veterinary Authority, the National Pest and  Disease Outbreaks website, the Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities (AMRRIC) website, or the Australian Veterinary Association website. For information about Seresto for Dogs, contact Elanco on Tel 02-98787777 or visit the Advantage Pet Care website.