Animals and COVID-19

Animals and COVID-19

As we continue to learn about the virus, knowing that dogs can get it too will change how we see things in the future. On February 28, 2020, a Pomeranian in Hong Kong who belonged to an who had coronavirus, was tested with a weak positive for COVID-19. The dog didn’t show symptoms of the illness, but he ended up dying. It isn’t known whether or not he died from the virus, but it is the most likely possibility. We can only hope that the rest of the dogs will stay safe and survive.

We know how humans can contract the virus, and the possibilities are endless. Just as we learned that you may not even know you have COVID the first 2 weeks you contract it. The same way it is with your pets and animals, you may not even know if they have the virus. That’s why the public is now informed to try to social distance with other people’s pets.

The first dog that contracted the virus was a 17- year old pomeranian, he was tested and the results said it was a very weak positive. The dog kept on getting tested until the results came negative or the positive was stronger. The dog didn’t show any symptoms of the virus which was dangerous since they needed to know where it came from. Doctors and vet’s suspected that the owner (a 60- year old woman) gave the virus to the dog since she had tested positive and was hospitalized. The dog came home and quarantined but sadly died on March 16th, 2020. 

The first dog that seemed to have the virus in the U.S. is a pug by the name of Winston. But due to recent test results, scientists and doctors realized he does not. Researchers concluded that the virus was only in the dog’s mouth since they tested with a cotton swab in the dog’s mouth. They realized that he must have just licked one of his owners who got the virus in his mouth. The father, mother, and son did contract the virus, but fortunately, they tested their second dog and cat and the results came back negative. The pug never had the virus in the first place and even though it was in its mouth, it was a very weak positive. “We weren’t really sure either way. We were just curious like everyone else.” Heather Mclean said when she found out the results were negative. “No virus was isolated, and there was no evidence of an immune response using the available test,” said Lyndsay Cole, a spokesperson for the USDA. 

Even though you may not know you have the virus please be safe and remember to wash your hands and wear a mask. Know that you are also putting your wonderful pets in danger as well. Pets won’t show symptoms if they have a weak positive. Make sure to practice social distancing with other owners and their pets as well. Be safe and keep those little animals healthy too.