PETS AND COVID-19
The outbreak of the new coronavirus has affected the entire world. Irrational fear in the first months of the pandemic led many families to abandon their pets, and there were even reports of people euthanizing them.
The World Health Organization, the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA), as wel
l as other human and animal health institutions pointed out at the time that there was no scientific evidence to prove that companion animals could spread covid-19.
And after a year into the pandemic, there is still no evidence that the infection of pets plays a significant role in the spread of SARS-CoV-2 among the human population; however, some exceptional cases seem to indicate that it may be transmitted from humans to animals.
The health of our animals is a priority, so today in My Dog Spot we will talk about this topic that has dominated our daily lives in the past year and how it may or may not affect our pets and how to take care of them.
What do I do if I have pets?
Since it is not yet known to what extent the coronavirus affects animals, it is best for their owners to treat them as they would their human relatives: if there is a confirmed case or suspicion that someone in the family may have contracted covid-19, do not allow pets to come into contact with that person, nor should the animal have contact with anyone else.
Infected animals that have been reported have had a mild illness, but may also have no symptoms. Therefore, it is recommended that, if the pet has been in contact with an infected person, it should also follow the preventive quarantine.
Although it is recommended to maintain social isolation, daily walks for your dog are important for his health, especially if you live in an apartment and space is limited. For this reason, some veterinarians advise you to:
Outdoor walks should be focused on satisfying their physiological needs, so don't spend too much time outside
Only one person at a time should walk the dog.
Don't let cats roam freely in the neighborhood.
Don't walk your dog in places where large numbers of people gather. While people shouldn't do it either, pets are more exposed because they should not wear a mask as it could be harmful to them.
After each walk wash your dogs’ paws when you get home with water and neutral soap or consult your veterinarian about products you can use on your pet to sanitize it in case it has special breed needs.
It is always important to pick up after your pets to respect public health and community laws, but in a pandemic these actions are vital.
If you are sick...
- If possible, ask a family member in your family group to care of your pet.
- Avoid contact with your pet. Although this may sound difficult for many people, do not touch, hug or kiss your pet, and do not let your pet lick you.
- If no one else can take care of your pet, wear a mask when you must be in contact and wash your hands before and after.
- If you have covid-19 and your pet shows symptoms do not take it immediately to the veterinarian: report first that yourself are or were sick so they can take the necessary measures or give you instructions to follow to ensure your dog’s health.
Even if the vaccine already exists, it will take some time before we see the results. We still have a long way to go to fully understand everything about this virus before we and our animal companion are completely safe. While we are still in the pandemic, we must be responsible and take care of our pets who are part of the family!
At My Dog Spot we understand that during this pandemic your pet's needs are still important, that's why we are there for you and we have a covid-19 response policy to continue offering you our service in a safe way for everyone.