Pet owners infected with COVID-19 are at risk of spreading the virus to their cats and dogs — whom can also end up with respiratory systems — a study has found.
Pet owners infected with COVID-19 are at risk of spreading the virus to their cats and dogs — whom can also end up with respiratory systems — a study has found (stock image).
'These preliminary results suggest that a substantial proportion of pets in households of persons with COVID-19 become infected,' said paper author and veterinary pathologist Dorothee Bienzle of the University of Guelph, Canada.
Out of the 17 cats, 18 dogs and one ferret, all cats were tested and none bar one proved infectious, but some showed signs of having been infected.
'All cats with an indeterminate PCR or positive antibody results were reported to have had respiratory and/or other illness by their owners around the time of the owner's COVID-19 infection,' said Professor Bienzle?
'20 per cent of dogs had positive IgG antibody results — indicating past infection — and one of these was reported to have had an episode of respiratory disease.'.
'Transmission from mink to humans has been reported on mink farms with a high proportion of infected animals maintained in close quarters and cared for by humans,' she continued.
'Transmission from pets to humans has not been reported, but since the virus changes minimally or not at all after transmission from humans to animals, such reverse transmission may occur.'
'Constructive challenge should then begin as this abstract is presented, with questions including on how the antibody results compared with those taken before COVID-19 was first reported and if the antibody tests are specific to COVID.'
'As such these results should not be over-interpreted and so cause unwarranted alarm, particularly as currently there is no evidence reported of contagious SARS-CoV-2 transmission from pets to people.'
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