Coronavirus and Pets
Worried about your pet and Coronavirus?
We know some of our pet owners are concerned about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and can it be passed to pets? Here is some information to help.
What you need to know about COVID-19 and your pets.
A report regarding a Hong Kong Pomeranian has caused concern among some pet owners. On the 4th March the Hong Kong SAR Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) reported that the dog tested “weakly positive” to COVID-19. Following confirmation that the dog’s owner was positive for the virus causing COVID-19. The Hong Kong authorities believe this finding may indicate the dog has a low-level of infection. The dog has not shown any clinical signs of disease and is currently being held in quarantine. At this stage there is no evidence that pets can play a role in the spread of this human disease, or that they become sick. COVID-19 is an ever-evolving situation, its best to ensure precautionary steps are taken when handling pets.
Precautionary steps to follow as a pet owner:
- Follow good hygiene when interacting with your pets.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after touching any animal.
- Avoid sharing food with your pets or letting your pets kiss or lick your face or mouth.
- Keep your pet’s vaccinations and parasite treatments up to date and maintain regular veterinary health checks.
What should you do if your pet has been exposed to someone with COVID-19?
There is currently no evidence that suggests pet dogs or cats can be a source of infection to other animals or to humans. This virus is being spread from human to human. Should your pet develop an unexplained illness, contact your public health official and your local Vet. It’s important to explain that your pet has been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 should this be the case.
Should I quarantine myself from my pets?
Pet owners who are or may become infected with COVID-19 should restrict close contact with their pets. Appropriate hand hygiene practices before and after handling pets is critical.