Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Can a dog catch or transmit coronavirus?

The health crisis related to the coronavirus disease has managed to break all social habits.

The effects on humans are known and social distancing has become a habit.

But, the study of Covid in dogs is still unexplored, and this is the case for all domestic animals. The most asked questions in this matter are obviously to know if the dog can transmit or can catch the coronavirus.

Let’s see together what the scientists say at the moment.

Is the contamination of the man to the animal possible?

The first studies presented the contacts of humans and animals as the source of the viral invasions. This was the case for the first coronavirus crisis. This was SARS-CoV in 2003.

The probability of animal-human contamination, referred to as zoonosis, has long been a matter of deep reflection and concern. The bat was the first animal implicated in this type of disease.

But what about the Covid?

The cases of contamination between humans have multiplied over the months, but there have also been cases of contamination on dogs.

The first case concerns the consultation of a woman in Asia who was infected with covid-19 in March for the testing of her dog.

The tests revealed that the dog was weakly contaminated with covid-19. They designated the dog as weakly positive for coronavirus disease. Despite the low number of viral particles, the moist nature of the various viral cavities are elements that favor the evolution of the disease. It should be noted that the dog did not have any of the outward symptoms that would lead to visible suspicion of the disease. The dog was placed in quarantine. This situation was presented as a very isolated case at the beginning of the crisis.

Since then, other cases have been found, notably in Canada and the United States where more tests have been performed on the animals. Some dogs show mild symptoms such as fever and fatigue.

For the moment, doctors and scientists think that humans, through contact (hugs, kisses, caresses…), can contaminate dogs.

However, there is no evidence that a dog can infect a human, or that a dog can infect another dog.

What measures should be taken to avoid contaminating your dog?

To limit the risk of contamination to humans and animals, it is important to take measures to protect everyone.

The different veterinary organizations, the WHO and the doctors present the following advice:

  • Take care to wash your hands with soap and water before and after touching a dog.
  • Avoid having your face licked by animals.
  • Keep a distance from animals you don’t know and do the same with your own animals if you think you may have contracted the virus.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough.
  • Be sure to avoid contact with strangers on the street.

In short, the dog, just like you and us, must respect barrier measures. There is no current information linking dog deaths to Covid, but they can catch it, so let’s be careful!

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