Ehrlichia canis, the causative agent of canine ehrlichiosis, was detected in a small number of domesticated dogs in the Halls Creek, Northern Territory and Kununurra, Western Australia area in May 2020. This was the first detection of E. canis in Australia. Further detections have occurred in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
E. canis was subsequently confirmed in domesticated dogs in Katherine and Alice Springs in the Northern Territory in June 2020.
E. canis has not been detected in dogs that have lived in NSW for their entire lives. Three dogs that were brought into NSW from the Northern Territory have tested positive for E. canis and are under veterinary supervision by private veterinarians.
Infection with E. canis is a notifiable disease in Australia. If you suspect ehrlichiosis in any dog in NSW, call the Emergency Animal Disease hotline on 1800 675 888.
Ehrlichiosis is a disease spread by the brown dog tick. It primarily affects dogs. It can result in death if not properly treated. In very rare cases, infected ticks may infect people. Infections in people are usually easy to treat.