After the designation of three TBE risk areas in Brandenburg due to the danger of ticks, several dogs have already been proven to have died in the vicinity of Forst (Spree-Neisse) from the disease babesiosis (dog malaria), which is transmitted by the animals. This was reported by the head of the city's animal shelter, Karin Schulze, after professional exchange with the responsible veterinarian.
Dog owners in the city of Forst and in the neighboring districts and communities should be particularly vigilant, according to the report, because the gray dog tick and the Auwald tick have been increasingly detected in recent days, Schulze said. These ticks mostly occur in Austria and Bavaria and are now also active in the south of Brandenburg. The "Lausitzer Rundschau" had reported about it.
The Robert Koch Institute had named for the first time the three districts Oder-Spree, Oberspreewald-Lausitz and Spree-Neisse, where the animals spread. Ticks can transmit early summer meningoencephalitis (TBE). According to the Ministry of Health, the designation of the areas is the basis for targeted prevention measures.
The shelter manager and her team look after 15 dogs, which they now have protected as a precaution with a medication that is effective for three months.Schulze called on all dog owners in the area to thoroughly check their animals for ticks. There are antidotes, she said, but if you don't react in time, dogs can also die.
TBE infection can also be fatal in dogs, confirmed Christine Klaus, a veterinary specialist in microbiology and parasitology at the Friedrich Loeffler Institute in Jena. This is also true for babesiosis, which is accompanied by high fever and red discolored urine.There are very good tick repellents that can be applied as a "spot on" to the skin or used as a collar, Klaus recommended. If used properly, that prevents all tick-borne diseases, he said.
Nationwide, there are 175 high-risk areas. The numbers depend on the weather and increased time spent outdoors, which favors possible contact with ticks. Since 2019, 13 TBE cases have been reported in humans in Brandenburg, according to the ministry - eight were said to have been caused by a tick bite.
Photo by Matt Nelson