As per state authorities, a Michigan home cat has been confirmed for SARS-CoV-2 following frequent contacts with its owners sick with the virus.
The Ingham County domesticated short-hair pet is the first of its kind in Michigan, but the number of SARS-CoV-2 cases in animals across the United States has been hundreds verified. It has been tested by the Michigan Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development after it had started sneezing and has since been recovering.
“COVID-19 mainly spreads from person to person through respiratory droplets from coughing, sneezing, and talking. Protecting pets begins by taking precautions to protect yourself by getting one of the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines,” explained Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian.
The situation is not surprising Dr. Nora Wineland, a national veterinarian, stated because other animals in the world had already shown symptoms and were confirmed positive. As of October 18, 257 animals, including 99 cats, were verified. Dogs, otters, ferrets, and primates, as well as mink or white-tailed deer, were among others which have been affected.
Wineland noted that animal cases typically included direct interaction with a diseased or tested positive owner or carer for COVID-19. According to MDARD, there is no indication that animals have a major effect on human infection.
More study is required to determine how various animals might be impacted by SARS-CoV-2 as per the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Although rarely, some COVID-19 infections may transmit from animals to humans, which the CDC says probably happened first with SARS-CoV-2 bats.
The medical experts suggest preventing direct interaction with your pets if you are unwell, especially kissing and petting them or sleeping in the same bed and/or sharing meals with them to further safeguard your animals.
Let someone healthy take care of your animals in the home when you’re unwell. If this is not possible, try using a mask when dealing with the pets and make sure to wash your hands first.