The coronavirus (COVID-19), the virus health officials are monitoring as it spreads across the globe, has many pet owners concerned. At this point in time, those involved in monitoring the virus and experts in pet health agree that pet dogs and cats can contract the virus from humans.
Pet Dogs and Cats cannot spread the virus to humans
The latest information coming from observational monitoring at the Hong Kong Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department is: Pet cats and dogs cannot pass the new coronavirus (COVID-19) on to humans, but they can test positive for low levels of the pathogen if they catch it from their owners. “There is currently no evidence that pet animals can be a source of infection of COVID-19 or that they become sick.”
Humans can spread the virus to their pet dogs and cats
Experts from the School of Public Health of The University of Hong Kong, the College of Veterinary Medicine and Life Sciences of the City University of Hong Kong and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) have unanimously agreed that the dog has a low-level of infection and it is “likely to be a case of human-to-animal transmission.”
Experts have recommended that any pets, including dogs and cats, from households where someone has tested positive for the virus should be put into quarantine.
Recommendation to pet owners
Pet owners should maintain good hygiene, including washing hands before and after handling animals, their food and supplies and no kissing them. People who are sick should avoid contact with pets and a veterinarian’s advice should be sought if changes in a pet’s health conditions are detected. (AP)
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