COVID-19 and Your Pets
Last updated: April 22nd, 2020
Information on COVID-19 and the associated risks are rapidly evolving as we continue to learn more about this virus. Pieper is closely monitoring the reports and research to make sure that you and your pets remain safe.
What we know:
Though not common, COVID-19 can infect cats, both domestic and wild
Some of the cats that tested positive had been exposed to COVID-19 positive humans
Cats are thought to be able to infect other cats
Some cats appear to become sick from the virus
There is no evidence that COVID-19 positive cats can infect humans or other animals
COVID-19 can infect dogs but it is very rare, and dogs do not seem to get sick
There is no evidence that COVID-19 positive dogs can infect humans or other animals
Frequently Asked Questions:
If I am COVID-19 positive, can I infect my pet?
It is possible you may infect your cat. You should practice social distancing with your pet, and if possible, have a non-infected household member care for them. If you must care for your pet, wear a mask, practice good hygiene such as hand washing, and avoid touching your face or close contact such as snuggling. Do not let your pets roam freely outside. Please take these precautions until you have been symptom-free for at least three days.
If my cat has been around someone that is COVID-19 positive, do I need to give them away?
No. Continue to practice good hygiene such as hand washing and avoid touching your face or close contact with your pet such as snuggling, and keep your cat indoors. Continue these precautions until your cat has been away from anyone sick for three days.
If I am taking care of a pet from a COVID-19 positive household, what should I do?
We recommend that if you have to care for a pet from a COVID-positive household, as a precaution, isolate the pet from other animals and humans, and practice social distancing and good hygiene, especially before and after interactions such as feeding and cleaning litter boxes/picking up feces. Continue these precautions until your cat has been away from anyone sick for three days.
If my cat is showing respiratory signs, is it likely they have COVID-19?
There are many respiratory diseases that affect cats. Unless there has been direct exposure to COVID-19, the chance is very low. Even if there has been direct contact with COVID-19, it has not been shown that this is a particularly high risk to cats.
Can you test my pet for COVID-19?
COVID-19 is very uncommon in pets and medical labs are not currently offering tests for domestic animals. Please follow our recommended social distancing protocols and call your veterinarian if you think your pet may have COVID-19.
What we are doing in the hospital:
- We are separating pets from COVID-19 positive households from other pets in hospital
- We continue to take precautions for our staff and facility
- We wear full personal protective equipment when interacting with any client/pet that is COVID-19 positive or high-risk
- We are a 100% mask-on facility while on the clinic floor
- We have divided our staff into teams and zoned areas of the hospital
We will continue to update you with information as it becomes available on how to keep your pet safe and healthy. And as always, Pieper is open and here to help should you need us.