As of this writing, COVID-19 cannot be transmitted by your pets. According to the website of American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says the disease is spread to humans through person-to-person contact. There have been no reports of pets or livestock becoming ill or spreading the coronavirus in the U.S. Likewise, the World Health Organization has stated that there is no evidence that dogs or cats have become ill with this particular virus.”
Caring for your pet when you’re sick
But what if you suspect that you have COVID-19? Aside from taking the precautionary measures not to infect others, here are some tips from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) so that you can still care for your pet:
Tell your physician and public health official that you have a pet in your home. It is still recommended that people diagnosed with COVID-19 limit contact with pets. Informing your doctor and public health officials will help them gauge your situation and make the necessary arrangements for your situation.
Have another house member care for your pet. Most likely, you will be quarantined for 14 days. Have someone care for your pet, it may be family or a pet sitter. What is important is someone is taking care of your pet while you’re gone.
Have an emergency kit prepared. Make sure that you have two weeks’ worth of essentials for your pet. Do not forget to include Addiction Foods pet food in your kit. We’ve got food for dogs and cats. And even vegetarian dog food! All these are available from your local store.
If you have a service animal and must care for it, wear a facemask. The Hong Kong incident may likely be a case of a pet getting infected by her contaminated surroundings (her pet parent was diagnosed with COVID-19). As such, wear a facemask and exercise proper hygiene after interacting with your pets or service animal.
Don’t share food, kiss or hug. Just to be on the safe side, avoid doing these displays of affection to your pets until such time that the pandemic has been declared under control.
Wash hands before and after pet contact. As always, personal hygiene is extremely important. The 20-second rule in hand-washing is an effective way to thoroughly clean your hands.
No sharing of dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels or bedding. If you plan to use these things for your pets, then by all means, hand it down to your pets. That’s it. Once you’ve decided that your pets will use these, you can’t take them back anymore for hygienic purposes.
The World Health Organization (WHO) website says that “there is no evidence that companion animals/pets such as dogs or cats can be infected with the new coronavirus.” There is no documented viral transfer of COVID-19 from pets to humans.* Just exercise proper hygiene to avoid contracting COVID-19.
For further reading: