Pets and COVID-19

From the beginning and during the coronavirus pandemic, humanity was convinced that only humans and no living things can be infected. However, current studies have been able to refute this fact. Contrary to popular belief, a new version was replaced - the coronavirus can infect both humans and pets.

There isn't any guarantee that the opinion is true and no one has proven for sure whether pets are exposed to this viral disease. The reason for the change in public opinion was the frequent cases of infection of some people with pets. It happened even in moments of complete isolation from the surrounding world. Russian, Italian, and Netherland scientists have been studying this issue, trying to find out how accurate the version is.

Scientists from different countries united in groups and tried to prove or disprove this fact. As in the case of scientists, people also disagreed - some thought it was true and contact with animals causes covid-19, and some thought it was fiction and did not take the situation seriously.

After conducting research, the scientists expressed that there is no reason to believe that a cat or dog can endanger the life of the owner and infect people with coronavirus. No statistics can prove cases of infection from wild or domestic animals, and humans don't have to worry about their life living next to pets.

No one can be 100% sure of the accuracy of one or another version and can not know exactly whether animals are carriers, whether they threaten humans in this difficult period or not. It’s better to take care of the pet just in case.

What causes coronavirus? How to take care for pet? What are the possible symptoms of pets the owner should pay attention to? - The answers to these questions you may find in our article.

Cats, dogs, and COVID-19

People and scientists have divided into 2 camps - some assume that domestic animals are at risk of infection and disease, others that this virus doesn't pose any threat to the lives and health of their pets.

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To dispel these myths or, conversely, to confirm them, Russian scientists have conducted their research. After conducting certain experiments, these scientists concluded that pets can be infected by their owners. That is, the virus can be transmitted from humans to animals. The probability of such an infection is very low, but it poses a great threat.

The point is that the transmitted virus can mutate and take new forms for spread to the human body and become the causative agent of coronavirus disease with even more unpredictable behavior.

The opinion of the Russian scientists was also shared by scientists from China, who came to the same conclusion. In the case of Chinese scientists, the reason for this version was the coronavirus infection of two puppies in Hong Kong.

Contrary to these claims, there is no exact explanation of exactly how and why coronavirus influences and manifests itself in dogs', and cats' bodies. But the fact of the spread of the virus from human to animal remains a fact-whether it is true or not.

It is even worth noting and remembering that the main version of the origin of the coronavirus is the contact between humans and animals. It is bats, snakes, and pagans that have been under suspicion all this time and it is believed that they may be those coronavirus vectors, regardless of the lack of reliable grounds and evidence of the truth of this common belief. Scientists can only speculate that the virus mutates and the transition from one suspected species to another can be dangerous. The origin of this virus and its main vector is still unknown.

If we talk about the infection of animals, as mentioned earlier, the first such case was recorded in two dogs in Hong Kong. A seventeen-year-old Pomeranian Spitz fell ill coronavirus symptoms in dogs, as was announced in the South China Morning Post. It was also known that the owner of this Spitz had coronavirus, defeated it, and recovered. The dog was cured, kept in quarantine for two weeks, and returned home, but after all the pet died. The dog tests for coronavirus showed weakly positive results on February 26 and 28, March 2 and 5.

Please, note that coronavirus in cat's symptoms is similar to a dog’s symptoms.

This confirms that you should pay attention to your pet and in case you notice a strange condition of the animal, you should immediately consult a veterinarian. Anxiety can be caused by coughing, fever, and unusual behavior such as weakness, refusal to eat, and indifference. But, testing pets for covid-19 isn’t common and is done in very rare cases. Contact your veterinarian immediately for any ailments.

But don't worry right away, these symptoms can mean many other diseases such as canine parainfluenza, feline asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia and it doesn't have to be the coronavirus.

The following symptoms may be more closely similar to the coronavirus infection in dogs and cats: fever, cough, discharge from the nose and eyes, sneezing, and possible signs of an acute intestinal infection.

Despite these symptoms, to date, there is no exact data on how testing is performed to detect the virus in animals and what treatments have to be provided.

Can I get COVID-19 from my pet?

In this article, we will try to find out if the cats and dogs suffer from close contact person covid-19, and if humans can get infected from the dogs.

If we summarize all the above facts, we can conclude that the animal can be infected by humans. Unfortunately, it is not possible to state and speak precisely about the possibility of human infection with animals because all conclusions are based on limited data and information we have today. However, it is believed that there is a risk of a pet spreading virus.

It is known that the causative agent of the COVID-19 is SARS-CoV-2. However, whether the carriers of this pathogen are dogs, cats, bats, or snakes, so far no one has said for sure. The question arises: “can coronavirus in dogs spread to humans?”.

Scientists have discovered that SARS-CoV-2 can capture organisms of many living creatures, so animals can spread it. These include almost all mammals such as rabbits, rats, and mice, badgers, raccoons, tongues, dogs, cats.

SARS-CoV-2 among animals was confirmed by the US National Veterinary Service (NVSL) in April. The infected were two domestic cats from the USA, in which a test for SARS-CoV-2 showed a positive result. It is unknown under what circumstances and where these pets might be infected.

On March 20, 2 dogs and 1 cat became infected by someone with COVID-19, which led to the emergence of a new type of coronavirus. This case showed that animals can overcome coronavirus asymptomatically. That is, this disease in animals and humans can manifest itself in different ways. It sounds unbelievable but cats and dogs can be infected by humans and transmit the virus within their populations without feeling anything and also be common carriers.

It can be assumed that both tigers and lions may be at risk of infection with COVID-19. The reason for this version was a case at the New York Zoo. After testing for SARS-CoV-2 in one tiger and several lions with signs of respiratory disease, the result was positive. Such infection in animals could come from a zoo worker - that is, the animal became infected by a human.

Does COVID-19 affect pigs and birds? According to different research, scientists have not proven that these animals are susceptible to coronavirus.

And even for all this COVID-19 pandemic period it is still not known whether the infection is possible from animal to human.

How to protect your pet from COVID-19

Every pet-owner should be extremely careful and during a pandemic, because COVID-19 isn’t a fully studied disease, little is known about its features, and it is not clear what qualities it may have after mutation. Animal coronavirus tests only exist for scientific research.

No one can guarantee that a pet won’t get infected from contact with people and different surfaces. Moreover, pets that live at home are more endangered to get infected than the animals which don’t.

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Cats and dogs that live outdoors are adapted to the environment; they couldn’t be infected with anything at all. Contrary, pets live in a favorable environments, their owners take care of them, so pets are going to be more susceptible and can catch all sorts of diseases faster than street animals.

As the veterinarians claim, it is quite difficult to keep a pet healthy:

If possible, do not take pets for walks in the parks, but to let them "get some air" on the balcony, keeping pets healthy.

It is much more difficult to clear an apartment of viruses and microbes that animals can bring home. But if you still can't do without walking, animals should be bathed after each return home.

From viral infections the most important protection is distance as coronavirus in dogs vaccine does not exist.

In conditions of high crowding or being in the same territory, the number of transmission factors increases sharply. Therefore, you need to be very careful in walking areas.

To protect cats, it is advisable for infected pet owners to wear masks, limit direct contact with them, and wash their hands before petting their pets as coronavirus in cats cure isn’t studied enough nowadays.

Moreover, even if the animal is sick, the owner may not even be aware of it. The disease may be asymptomatic. As long as the body is strong and healthy, it can resist internal and external aggressors. Once the body is slightly weakened, the infection can intensify. Therefore, whether an animal gets sick or not depends on the organism. The dog can live with coronavirus all your life and you will never know about it. Since the disease will be asymptomatic, there will be no fever, no cough, no discomfort.

Firstly, follow the rules

The coronavirus cannot stand extreme temperatures. It is scientifically proven that the virus is destroyed during boiling or processing with most disinfectant solutions. It also does not like warmth: in a heated room, it dies in a few days. Also, washing hands is always a good idea against coronavirus.

The American doctors have some recommendations to stay safe and to keep your pets safe as well:

  • Don’t allow your pet to communicate with anyone else outside the family.
  • Remember to keep your hands clean, wash them regularly, and use an antiseptic.
  • Strengthen pet`s immunity with a balanced diet, sufficient drinking water, regular physical activity, give him vitamins and minerals.
  • Disinfect favorite toys of your dog.
  • Take the distance to avoid infection.
  • Discuss the fate of the animal with relatives in advance in case it comes to your hospitalization.

Visit a veterinarian if you noticed any symptoms covid-19. Animals have a huge amount of pneumonia, just like humans. It can be some other viral, bacterial, or allergic disease, a manifestation of asthma.