Can your pets get, or give you, COVID-19?

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While public health officials don’t know the exact source of COVID-19, they’re working hard to try and figure it out. What they do know, though, is that the first infections were linked to a live animal market in Wuhan, China. So if a human got the virus from an animal, why haven’t other animals continued to spread the virus to more humans? As we know, the virus quickly mutated and is now spread person-to-person.

Can your furry or feathered pet companion give you coronavirus? Can they get the virus themselves? At this time, no. There is no evidence that pets can spread COVID-19 and the CDC says they have not received any reports of pets (or other animals) becoming sick with COVID-19.

However, because COVID-19 was spread from animal to human initially, the CDC warns that you should still restrict contact with your pets and other animals if you become sick, or suspect that you are sick, with COVID-19. Until more information is known about the virus, it is a good idea to stay safe around your pets.

If you do become sick, the CDC recommends that another member of your household take care of your pet in a separate area. They say that you should avoid petting, snuggling, being licked by or sharing food with your pet. If you must be around your pet while you are sick, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before and after interactions.

You can find more information on the CDC website here.

##RVT941

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John T
4 months ago

There are reports in the news this morning of a cat in Europe being confirmed with COVID-19 that it caught from its owner.

Terri R
4 months ago
Reply to  John T

As of this morning it has still not been genetically confirmed to be COVID 19 as cats get a species specific coronavirus w /wo disease symptoms. Will keep you posted 🙂

Terri R
4 months ago

Going to update everyone as of last night with veterinary information. Dogs & cats have their own coronaviruses that can involve GI, resp & in the case of cats, can be fatal (FIP) – start there.
At this time 2 dogs have been found to be carriers of the Covid virus received while staying with their ill owners over the past 6 weeks. One of those dogs has passed (it was 17 years old – not due to the virus) and the other has not been tested again recently. Both dogs never showed any signs of disease and were not believed to be able to transmit this coronavirus.
Reported yesterday in Belgium is a cat with coronavirus showing GI & respiratory signs rumored to be from its sick owner – we in the vet community are requesting genetic sequencing before we will commit to this as a valid concern.
That said we know of cats that did come down with the original SARs virus from sleeping with their sick owners and we do know that ferrets typically can catch flu from humans. Bottom line, if you are sick quarantine / isolation should include not only the people around you but your pets also. Stay safe people & God bless. Facts not fear.

Terri R
4 months ago
Reply to  Terri R

rereading & clarifying – if you are sick please don’t have anyone or your animals staying in close contact with you as you recover. Yes it will be lonely but speaking for your veterinarian… we don’t want your pet to need our care after it has stayed with you and risk our lives. We are still working as part of the country’s biosecurity essential personnel to help stop this virus (and have been working for years to shut down the wildlife markets & change cultural practices in China – but that is a different thread all day long)

Timothy Hardy
4 months ago

You are absolutely correct that we don’t know the source of COVID-19 but it’s because China hasn’t been open about it. Chinese government officials claim it came from a live meat market but you hit the nail on the head when you asked why it hasn’t spread to other animals and humans from that source. The answer is “because it didn’t originate from the meat market.” Wuhan is the home of two of China’s largest biowarfare labs. Genetic markers have already indicated that COVID-19 is a man-made virus. A likely scenario is that one of the lab’s workers was accidentally and unknowingly contaminated and carried the virus home with him or her, from where it began to spread. It is more interestingly coincidental that the first known case, according to China, was a doctor. Did she work at one of the two labs?

COVID-19 is a contact virus and is not airborne…. at least, not yet. Will it mutate? COVID-19 is a disastrous example of how a biowarfare agent was accidentally released.

Ray Leissner
4 months ago

Why not offer that there are some really outstanding videos on the corona virus, how it propagates and mutates, provided not by news organizations with agendas, but by medical facilities that have been and continue to study the virus long before it became an issue. Awareness never hurt anyone.

Bill
4 months ago
Reply to  Ray Leissner

Can you provide any links to those?

Alvin
4 months ago
Reply to  Ray Leissner

So helpful – NOT!!