Do Dogs Spread Coronavirus (Covid-19)? Everything You need To Know
There is a great deal of conflicting information about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic regarding dogs and other pets and the concerns around whether they are a concern for humans. The World Health Organization states, “There is no evidence that a dog, cat or any pet can transmit COVID-19. COVID-19 is mainly spread through droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks. To protect yourself, clean your hands frequently and thoroughly.”
We know how much you love your dogs and that you’ll do everything you can to keep them and your family safe. Advice and guidelines are constantly evolving, so keep an eye out for any new developments.
Our dogs are incredibly important to us during the lockdown and they are probably loving having people at home more. Dogs are fabulous companions, provide the perfect reason to go outside safely and are vital for maintaining a healthy state of mind.
By following a few of the guidelines below and acting responsibly, there is no reason for your dog or pets to be negatively affected right now.
Do Dogs Spread Coronavirus (Covid-19): Useful Guidelines
Can dogs catch COVID-19?
It’s really important to remember that the current pandemic is specifically in relation to COVID-19, a new strain of Coronavirus. Dogs have been diagnosed in the past with other strains of Coronavirus (resulting in Kennel Cough, for example) but there is absolutely no evidence that they can catch COVID-19. You may have seen unconfirmed reports but there is currently nothing to back these up.
Can dogs be COVID-19 carriers?
We know that the COVID-19 virus can be passed on through an infected person touching certain surfaces. There is a chance that if someone with COVID-19 touches your pet, the virus could remain on their fur – it’s not known if or for how long the virus lives on every surface, so to be absolutely sure, precautions should be taken.
Is it still safe to walk dogs?
Yes, as long as you are not self-isolating and remember to observe social distancing. Keep the recommended 2 meters away from other people whether or not they have dogs. We are all allowed out to exercise daily so you could use this time to walk your dog. If there is more than one person in your household, you could each take it in turns to walk your dog more often to keep them active.
What do the experts say about Covid-19 and dog walking?
Defra has suggested that it you are quarantined or self-isolating if possible arrange for someone else who doesn’t live with you to walk your dog. Again, remember to respect social distancing rules when your dog is collected and wash your hands once your dog is returned to you. The same applies if you are walking someone’s dog for them. Consider using different leads as well.
If you can’t take your dog out or arrange for someone else to do it, there are lots of indoor activities you can try to keep you both occupied. Take a look at these ideas from the Blue Cross website for inspiration.
What Covid-19 precautions should i take?
- Hand hygiene is an essential part of restricting the spread of COVID-19. It is good practice to wash your hands after petting your dog – besides COVID-19, dogs can carry other bacteria so this is something you should always do. The Kennel Club recommends doing this after feeding and touching their toys or bedding as well. As raw dog food feeders, hand hygiene is something we’re used to.
- If you are not self-isolating and can go out to walk your dog, avoid letting other people touch them. The same goes for you and other people’s dogs. If you do touch another dog, be sure to wash your hands after or clean with alcohol-based gel. Don’t use alcohol gel on your dog’s fur.
- Don’t let your dog lick your face – good practice anyway.
From all the Benyfit Natural family, woofs and all, please stay safe and we look forward to seeing you all on the other side.