English for PTA


There is strong evidence that the corona virus is a zoonotic disease. Zoonotic diseases, also known as zoonoses, are germs such as viruses, bacteria, parasites, and fungi that spread to humans through various forms of contact with infected animals.

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It is easy to forget that zoonoses other than SARS-2/Covid-19 exist. From “A” for African sleeping sickness to “Z” for Zika virus, the animal diseases that can affect us have been around for a long time. There is increasing evidence from DNA and RNA sequencing that measles, smallpox, influenza, HIV, and diphtheria started out as zoonotic diseases. Even the common cold is suspected as having started as a zoonosis. Especially pets such as cats and dogs, and also farm animals are vectors and reservoirs for zoonoses. Lyme disease, for example, is still widespread in the Central German Uplands and may be transferred by pets to their owners.

PTA: Guten Tag.
Male customer: Do you speak English?

Yes, a little. How may I help you?
I have just been to the vet with my dog. She had a check-up in preparation for our holiday.

Is she okay?
Yes, no problems there. The vet asked where we were going on holiday as it’s quite difficult, because of the pandemic, to get nice holiday accommodation. When I told her that we intended going to the Bavarian Forest, she asked me about protection from ticks, not just for me but for my dog.

I can understand that. You see the last few winters have been very mild, which means a lot of the ticks don’t die, and then the percentage of adult ticks increases. As far as I know it went from 10 to 30 per cent. This, of course, increases the risk of getting infected.
I thought ticks were generally harmless!

Yes and No! The species of tick mostly found in the Bavarian Forest is the deer tick. Deer ticks can be carriers of Lyme disease, which is also known as Lyme borreliosis. These ticks are also carriers of early summer meningoencephalitis.
So what do you recommend?

I would recommend this ioxdicide for your dog.
Sorry, an ioxdi-what?

An anti-tick agent. When regularly applied, it can actually kill the ticks when they land on the animal. This one is our best-seller.
Okay, I’ll definitely take that. What do you recommend for my wife and me?

For you and your wife I recommend this insect repellent. It protects from midges for 6 to 8 hours and from ticks for up to 5 hours.
That sounds good.

It’s a good idea to spray it on your clothing to make sure you have all-round protection. But I still recommend checking yourself after any hiking with your wife and dog.
Why is that?

This is a really reliable product, but ticks can get in to places that you might not expect!

Certainly, they like warm places such as the back of the knee, armpits, and neck and head. In animals it’s mostly on the inside of the leg, between the paws, and around the ears.
I’ll remember that!

Have a nice holiday. Bye, bye.
Thank you. Goodbye.

You can find this article at PTA IN DER APOTHEKE 11/2020 on page 124.

Catherine Croghan, Lecturer in English and native speaker

zoonotic diseaseZoonose
increasing evidenceimmer mehr Anzeichen
common coldgewöhnliche Erkältung, grippaler Infekt
reservoirs(hier) Depots, Speicher
lyme diseaseBorreliose
deer tickRehzecke, Hirschzecke, Holzbock
insect repellentInsektenschutzmittel
between the pawszwischen die Pfoten