The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has impacted the lives of all living beings and not just humans. Although the disease has been more contagious among humans there have been reports of a few cases of animals getting infected with COVID. According to a study, the risk of spreading COVID from animals to humans is low but animals can develop the disease from human contact. It was found that most of the animals that tested positive for COVID-19 got infected after coming in contact with people having symptoms of COVID. There have been reports of lions, tigers, hippos, hyenas, and some other species getting affected by COVID in the U.S. These are the few instances that indicate that animals are also vulnerable to COVID and still it requires more research to understand the different effects and risk factors of the disease among animals.
COVID-19 and Pets
Pets have a higher chance of getting infected with COVID because they always remain in close contact with their owners. If their human owners catch COVID then it is quite likely for them to develop the disease faster than other family members because animals cannot use a mask or any other protective shield. The U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that many pets including cats and dogs have been found COVID positive soon after coming in contact with the people infected with COVID. However, the risk of humans in case of developing COVID from animals remains low. Till now no evidence has been found that viruses including coronavirus can spread from animals to humans or even other animals. But on the other hand, health experts opine that animals can be carriers of certain germs including COVID which can affect people especially the elderly and the ones with the weak immune system.
People with pets have to be very careful in case they develop symptoms of COVID because pets cannot express themselves nor can they wear masks. This is why if pet parents develop symptoms of COVID or common cold it is always advisable to isolate themselves from their pets and strictly follow COVID appropriate behavior. Just like the people who are more prone to develop COVID than others pets are also vulnerable. In the times of pandemic pet owners and vets should take care of animals in the same way just as family members and medical experts do for the people who are vulnerable to COVID.
COVID Appropriate Behavior for Pets
COVID appropriate norms which are to be followed in the case of animals are not much different from humans. It is just that in the case of animals, people should take the initiative of keeping them safe from getting infected. People exhibiting symptoms of COVID should stay away from pets and stray animals. Not just COVID symptoms in cases of common cold also one should keep distance from animals because in times of pandemic no cold can be simply treated as less severe. It is always safe to cover the mouth and hands with masks and gloves while feeding a dog or a cat. Pet foods should be served hot and the things they come in contact with should be sanitized and washed as well properly. If pets are found to be showing symptoms of COVID it is necessary for them to get tested by giving swab samples. Other than these precautions, pets should also be washed with appropriate soaps and shampoos regularly so that they remain clean and healthy as well.