AVOID CONTACT WITH PET CAT OR DOG IF YOU HAVE COVID-19, SAY EXPERTS
Cat or dog owners who have Covid-19 should avoid their pets while infected, experts have said. Scientists in the Netherlands have found that coronavirus is common in pet cats and dogs where their owners have the disease.
While cases of owners passing on Covid-19 to their pets are considered to be of negligible risk to public health, the scientists say that there is a “potential risk” that domestic animals could act as a “reservoir” for coronavirus and reintroduce it to humans.
Dr Els Broens, from Utrecht University in the Netherlands, said: “If you have Covid-19, you should avoid contact with your cat or dog, just as you would do with other people.
“The main concern, however, is not the animals’ health – they had no or mild symptoms of Covid-19 – but the potential risk that pets could act as a reservoir of the virus and reintroduce it into the human population. Fortunately, to date no pet-to-human transmission has been reported.
“So, despite the rather high prevalence among pets from Covid-19 positive households in this study, it seems unlikely that pets play a role in the pandemic.”