Can Cats Get COVID-19?

LiveScience reported that a cat contracted COVID-19 from its pet parent, the first case of human-to-cat transmission ever. This means that companion animals are not spared from contracting the virus anymore.

Pets in peril

After a Pomeranian and a German Shepherd were infected with COVID-19 by their pet parents in two separate occasions, The World Health Organization (WHO) updated its Myth Buster section by removing an old infographic that claimed there was no evidence that COVID-19 could not affect pets as this latest case of human to animal transmission proves that it is now a possibility. Another alarming discovery is that cats can also spread the virus to their fellow felines. According to the latest study from the Harbin Veterinary Research Institute (HVRI) in China, cats are more susceptible to infection compared to other animals. Dogs, chickens, pigs, and ducks were unlikely to infect one another.”

No cause for alarm…yet

While the HRVI findings may be interesting to other scientists, the experiments were not representative of real-life interactions between people and their pets. There is still no direct evidence that infected cats can pass the COVID-19 virus to people. As a precautionary measure, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the United States still recommends that people with COVID-19 should limit contact with their pets. These include stroking them, being licked, and sharing food.

What to do if your cat has COVID-19

If you’ve got the virus or suspect that you do, check this link for some tips. But if you suspect that your pet companion has it, here are a few things you should and should not do:

  1. DO: Call your veterinarian and check if they can handle patient care at this time. Some clinics offer drive-up services as option to limit physical contact between humans.
  2. DON’T: Do not put face masks on pets. It may cause breathing difficulties and cause your pet unnecessary stress.
  3. DON’T: Do not cage or crate your pets or unnecessarily isolate them. Pets are not known to spread the virus to humans.

At this time of the pandemic, caring for pets is important. That’s why we at Addiction Foods continue our production and distribution of pet food under strict safety measures. Your favorite Addiction pet food brands will still be available at your local store. Let’s do our share to #flattenthecurve. Stay safe and shop responsibly or avail of contactless online delivery.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram for more pet health and nutrition updates.

For further reading:
1. https://nypost.com/2020/04/03/cats-can-infect-each-other-with-coronavirus-study-says/
2. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/01/cats-can-infect-each-other-with-coronavirus-chinese-study-finds
3. https://www.livescience.com/cat-infected-covid-19-from-owner.html
4. https://www.oregonvma.org/care-health/zoonotic-diseases/coronavirus-faq
5. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/animals.html
6. https://www.thestar.com.my/lifestyle/living/2020/03/28/worried-about-your-pet-during-the-covid-19-pandemic-here039s-what-you-should-know

 

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