The daily life of everyone in the UK has now been affected by the governments latest advice to isolate due to the Coronavirus.
If you were concerned whether your pet could contract the disease the current advice from the World Health Organisation and British Veterinary Association is that there’s no evidence that pets can be a source of infection or that they can become sick from COVID-19.
We therefore thought it would be a good idea to recirculate some wonderful advice from the PDSA
I am self-isolating; can my pet stay with me?
It is advised to avoid close contact with your pet such as sharing a bed. Wash your hands after touching and feeding your pet. It’s also a good idea to avoid letting them lick your face or share your food.
Is dog walking permitted?
The latest Government guidance allows for one walk per day per person making sure to adhere to social distancing – 2 metres between people. If there is more than one person in a house then they could each walk the dog separately, ensuring the dog gets more than walk a day.
Keep your dog on a lead around others and thoroughly wash your hands before leaving and when you get home or to your safe place (back in the car if you have hand gel).
Dogs can be let out in the garden or taken out to the toilet whenever needed. If you don’t have access to a private space or garden, make sure these trips are as quick as possible and ensure you maintain your social distance.
Can pets spread Coronavirus?
There is evidence that the virus can live on surfaces for some time, depending on the type of material, temperature and other factors. This could include your pet’s coat or fur. If you are showing any Covid-19 symptoms it’s important to minimise contact with your pet as much as possible, as you pet could carry the virus from one person to another.
You should also maintain good hygiene practices, such as regularly washing your hands thoroughly with soap and hot water, especially after handling or feeding your pet. It’s always sensible to avoid letting your pet lick your face.
There is no need to give up or quarantine pets and we would urge owners not to panic. Pets can be a great source of comfort, and a daily dog walk (following the guidelines above) is a positive thing for everyone’s physical and mental wellbeing.
What should I do if my pet starts coughing and sneezing?
There is currently no evidence to suggest that dogs and cats can become ill from the COVID-19 virus. Check out the PDSA Pet Health Hub for information on the COVID-19 virus and the risk to our pets.
If you notice any signs of illness in your pet, call your vet as usual in the first instance.
They will advise you on the best course of action, please be aware that most vet practices will be operating very differently from usual with their own specific practice procedures.
Please do not make a visit to your vets unless you have spoken to them in advance, you probably will not be seen.
Please be patient with your local vet practice as they work to follow Government guidance in this unprecedented situation.