When you love your dog like a child, you want to do everything you can to protect them, and knowledge is power. Covid has crippled society since it started spreading like wildfire in late 2019. But what about your furry loved ones? Can they catch Covid? We scoured the internet to find the most relevant and fact-based answer to this question. The following blog post is based on research by leading health organisations such as Mayo Clinic, WHO & The CDC.
A Little Background Information
The exact origin of the virus that causes COVID-19 is unknown. But it is believed to have started in an animal, spread to humans and then spread rapidly from person to person. Because the virus is believed to have started in animals, can your pet still get it? After three years of living in a world with Covid, here’s what we know when it comes to your pet...
Can My Dog Get Sick with Covid-19?
Firstly, it is highly unlikely that a pet can even get infected with the SARS-CoV-2 (Covid) virus. There have been a handful of reported cases of pets (including cats and dogs) acquiring the virus since it was discovered in late 2019. This is compared with (reported) human instances of infection with the virus sitting at around 661,000,000 (World Health Organization). How did these pets contract the virus? Well, the few known cases of animals catching the virus were acquired from close contacts with humans, rather than other animals.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (‘CDC’) have reported that the risk of animals spreading COVID-19 to people is low.
In summary, the chances of your dog contracting Covid-19 and becoming ill is highly unlikely, even if you are actively infected. Additionally, leading health authorities and veterinarians specifically advise AGAINST wiping or bathing your pet with disinfectants or alcohol to prevent sickness, as this can harm your pets sensitive skin and fur.
What to Do If You Think Your Pet Has the Corona Virus
According to the CDC, pets infected with Covid-19 don’t usually display overt symptoms. Of the reported animals that have tested positive for Covid-19, most had only a mild illness and have since fully recovered. Click here for a guide on what to do if you suspect your pet has Covid-19, and how to manage a pet who has tested positive for the virus.
Can My Pet Transfer Covid-19 to Me or Anyone Else?
Please keep in mind that, like humans, pets can play a role in spreading Covid-19 by carrying the virus in their fur and paws. Although it is currently not known how long the virus can survive on surfaces, including dog fur. The virus is thought to survive longer on surfaces with a higher protein content, such as metal or plastic - for this reason, there is a lower chance of catching the virus from your dog, than an infected metal park bench, for example.
In addition to this, keep in mind that the most common cause of infection is through the air via respiratory droplets from infected humans, rather than surface transmission.
In summary, it is unlikely that your dog can transfer the Covid-19 to you through their fur. See here for an article on the spread of Covid through pets by veterinarian Daniel C. DeSimone, M.D.
As always, it is advised that if you are concerned about your pets wellbeing, your first point of contact should be your veterinarian.
Keep your dog healthy so they can rock their ST ARGO kit!