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Can My Pet Cat Or Dog Get The Coronavirus?!

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Maybe. It has happened.

A tiger in New York City with a respiratory illness (I know, nothing makes sense) was the first animal to test positive in the U.S. That was in early April.

On April 22, two pet cats in New York were confirmed to have COVID-19 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Veterinary Services Laboratories.

The CDC's website said it has been aware of reports about pets, including cats and dogs, being infected. Most had close contact with an infected person.

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There's an evolving FAQ with CDC guidance on protecting animals. Specific recommendations were laid out in the press release from the USDA:

  • Don't let pets interact with people or animals from outside of your home.
  • Keep cats indoors when possible to prevent mingling with other animals or people.
  • Walk dogs on a leash and keep at least 6 feet away from other people and animals.
  • Avoid dog parks or public places where a large number of people and dogs gather.

If you're sick (either suspected or confirmed COVID-19), you should:

  • Avoid contact with your animal friend, and isolate.
  • That means no petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, or sharing food or bedding.
  • Have another member of your household care for your pet if possible.
  • If that's not possible, wear a cloth face covering and wash your hands before and after interactions.

Meanwhile, adoptions of shelter pets in L.A. have been "off the charts."

MANY, MANY, MANY MORE QUESTIONS ANSWERED IN OUR FULL GUIDE:


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