The coronavirus has led to people being more cautious than ever about hygiene. People are more conscious about washing their hands, coughing and sneezing with their mouths covered, etc. They’re also doing their best to isolate themselves, maintain social distance and work from home within these circumstances.
This isn’t entirely unjustified, either. The coronavirus has spread far and wide across the world. It has led to more than 13,000 deaths so far, from more than 311,000 reported cases in total, per the Johns Hopkins University’s data.
Governments across the world are suspending public transport. Even places of public gathering, such as movie theatres, schools, workplaces, etc. are closing their doors to help curb the virus’ spread.
This level of cautiousness has led people to ask the question – what about our pet animals? Are they capable of carrying the disease? The answer is no, pets are not a health risk in these times. However, there were certain reports that spread panic among pet owners.
Two Reports Of Pets Testing Positive For Coronavirus
Two such reports came up out of Hong Kong specifically, which said two dogs have tested positive for Coronavirus. Hong Kong’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) said in a statement that a German Shepherd dog is the second such case.
The dog resides in a home in Pok Fu Lam and lives with a mixed-breed dog. Both dogs are now living in quarantine, but the mixed-breed dog has consistently tested negative for the virus. Neither dog has shown any symptoms, either.
The first case of this nature was that of a 17-year-old Pomeranian, who also tested positive for Coronavirus. This case in particular terrified some people since the dog then passed away. However, experts have come out debunking any false information that may have sprung up due to these reports.
Experts Shutting Down These Rumors
CNN has quoted Dr. John Williams, chief of the division of pediatric infectious diseases at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh as one of these experts.
“No. I think the idea that we’re going to give this virus to our pets or we’re going to get it from them is just nonsense,” he said. He also spoke about the Pomeranian’s case specifically. “That was a weak positive in the dog. We don’t even know if that was a real positive.”
Dr. Dana Varble, the chief veterinary officer for the North American Veterinary Community backed up his statements. “The Pomeranian was never sick with the illness, and it was released from quarantine and then died. We don’t know what the dog died of because they didn’t do an autopsy, but this dog was extremely elderly and had multiple underlying health conditions,” she said.
So, if you’re concerned that hugging your dog will give you the coronavirus somehow, don’t be.