Many pet owners have questions about COVID-19.
What do we know about COVID-19 and the effect on our pets? Can my pet get the virus? Can my pet pass the virus onto me?
What we do know
The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) advises that the current spread of COVID-19 is a result of human to human transmission. There currently is no evidence to show a link between companion animals and the spread of the disease. For this reason, there are no measures to control the contact we have with our pets.
PFIAA encourages pet owners to always use good hygiene practices. This includes good hand hygiene by thorough hand washing or the use of hand sanitizer before and after handling our pets and their food.
Things to think about:
- Remember to wash your hands thoroughly or use hand sanitizer after touching animals
- Always supervise children to ensure their hands are clean and sanitized
- Do not allow pets to lick open wounds or cuts
- Prevent pets from licking young children or people at risk of catching the virus
- Always protect your hands when cleaning up pet excrement
From the available information, we do not believe there is a reason for pet owners to be concerned.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose with the elbow when coughing and sneezing and avoiding close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing. As per general good food safety practices, raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid potential cross-contamination with uncooked foods. Meat from healthy livestock that is cooked thoroughly remains safe to eat. Further recommendations from WHO can be consulted here.
The above is from the WHO website.
For more information regarding COVID-19 and your pets, please go to the following websites:
- World Organisation for Animal Health – https://www.oie.int/scientificexpertise/specific-information-and-recommendations/questions-and-answers-on2019novel-coronavirus/
- World Health Organization – https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-acoronaviruses and https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus2019
- Department of Health (Victoria) https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/public-health/food-safety/food-businesses/covid-19-and-food-business
- Australian Veterinary Association – https://www.ava.com.au/coronavirus/
- World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) – https://wsava.org/news/highlighted-news/the-new-coronavirus-and-companion