Life is different because of the COVID-19 outbreak. Schools have switched over to digital learning, some states have issued stay in place orders, and many of us are working remotely from home or temporarily out of a job. There’s ample information about COVID-19 and the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the disease for people, but what about dogs? Here is some information about COVID-19 for dog owners.
Does COVID-19 come from animals?
COVID-19 is a zoonotic disease; this means that the disease can spread between animals and people. The SARS-CoV-2 virus (2019 novel coronavirus) is natural in origin; it’s currently believed that the virus originated in bats, spread to pangolins, and then to humans.
Can your dog get COVID-19?
While there are reported cases of COVID-19 in two dogs (Hong Kong) and one cat (Belgium), there is not sufficient evidence that indicates COVID-19 can spread between humans and pets.
Should you practice social distancing from your dog?
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, healthy pet owners should continuing caring for their pets as usual because there is no evidence that you and your pet can transmit coronovirus to one another.
Keep grooming, walking, feeding, and playing with your pet like you normally do. However, don’t go to public parks or dog parks where people gather.
What if you’re sick with COVID-19?
The AVMA recommends that people who are sick with COVID-19 limit contact with their pets. This recommendation is out of “an abundance of caution”. There is still much that we do not know about 2019 novel coronavirus. Have a healthy family member, friend, or neighbor assist with grooming, feeding, and care for your dog.
Can you protect your dog from getting COVID-19?
There is currently no evidence that your dog can get sick from coronavirus. However, you can protect your dog from viruses and infections in the same way that you protect yourself.
- Wash your hands.
- Isolate yourself if you have symptoms.
- Stay home as much as possible.
- Disinfect surfaces (clean your dog’s food and water bowls, too).
A dog can provide a lot of comfort during troubling times, especially during times when social distancing is necessary. Isolation and self-quarantine brings boredom and loneliness—a cuddly Goldendoodle makes everything better!