<p>Leishmania infantum is transmitted by sand flies and causes visceral leishmaniasis (VL) in humans, as well as canine leishmaniosis (CanL) in dogs, the main reservoir of infection in Europe. The infection spread northwards in the last two decades, but case data are scarce, hindering monitoring and evaluation of incidence as is required by European WHO guidelines. We aim to identify the current geographical distribution of CanL incidence in Spain, which has been endemic for CanL, and France, where CanL is emerging. An online survey was conducted among veterinarians in Spain and France questioning CanL incidence in the years 2016—2017. These data were interpolated to estimate incidence in both countries using the geographical analysis ordinary kriging. Two hundred and seventy-three (273) veterinarians from 81 out of 148 French and Spanish districts completed the survey. The mean incidence in veterinary practices was 21 CanL cases per 1000 dogs during the past year, which was higher in Spain (31/1000 dogs/year) than in France (6/1000 dogs/year). Incidence rates were highest in south-eastern Spain, but sporadic cases were found up to the most northern regions of France. Our study confirms the northward spread of CanL in Spain and France, as the incidence rates were higher than reported in previous studies and cases were found in areas formerly considered non-endemic for L. infantum. Monitoring the reservoir of infection in dogs is essential for implementing timely and geographically-targeted interventions to prevent further spread of CanL and VL in Europe.</p>

doi.org/10.1016/j.vprsr.2021.100613, hdl.handle.net/1765/135923
Veterinary Parasitology: Regional Studies and Reports
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

E.A. (Epke) Le Rütte, Lotte S. van der Wilt, C.A. (Caroline) Bulstra, D. (Daan) Nieboer, P (Peri) Kontoroupis, S.J. (Sake) de Vlas, & J.H. (Jan hendrik) Richardus. (2021). Incidence and geographical distribution of canine leishmaniosis in 2016—2017 in Spain and France. Veterinary Parasitology: Regional Studies and Reports, 25. doi:10.1016/j.vprsr.2021.100613