Other than humans, dogs have also been tested positive for COVID, but unlike humans, they do not fall sick. However, if a person is Covid positive, its best for them to stay away from their pets, specifically dogs and cats, as they can act as medium of transmission.
According to the new study done by a Dutch author Dr. Els Broens of Utrecht University in the Netherlands, dogs can get the Covid virus from their positive human. The author of the study- Dr. Broens said, “About one out of five pets will catch the disease from their owners. Luckily, the animals do not get very ill from it.”
The research found surprisingly high numbers of pets, specifically dogs and cats that may be getting infected with covid. According to the new research, which will be presented next week at the European Congress of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, stated that the high infection rate among these animals is due to the owner’s affection towards their pets.
Dr. Broens stated, “A lot of the pet owners are in very close contact, like they sleep with their animals in their bed, so you can imagine that there’s close contact, so that transmission can take place.”
As reported by Reuters, in order to carry out the study, the University of Utrecht sent a mobile veterinary clinic to households in the Netherlands that had tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 200 days. Dr. Broens and his team tested 156 dogs and 154 cats from 196 households where there were positive cases of COVID-19.
The study also noted that about 17% of the animals had antibodies for the Covid infection, which suggests that the pets were infected along with their human. According to the reports, during the research period, six cats and seven dogs had an active infection when they returned a positive PCR result.
Although there have been no reported cases of per to human transmission of COVID-19, but its safe to avoid contact with animals just like with humans if sick. Broens suggested, “If you have COVID, you should avoid contact with your cat or dog, just as you would do with other people. The main concern is not the animals’ health but the potential risk that pets could act as a reservoir of the virus and reintroduce it into the human population.”