The presence of pets in your home is proven to reduce stress and anxiety, help with loneliness and depression, and contribute to your overall holistic health—especially during stressful times. Many are staying at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, and our pets can be a great source of comfort (and entertainment!) during this anxiety-inducing situation. Our team at Anasazi Animal Clinic in Gilbert has been receiving many inquiries regarding pets and the transmission of COVID-19. We want to answer all of your questions so you can have peace of mind regarding your interaction with your pets at this time. Keep reading for more information on COVID-19 and pets.
Can my pet contract COVID-19?
While information on the spread of COVID-19 is rapidly evolving, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Organisation for Animal Health are currently stating there is no reason to believe pets can spread the COVID-19 virus. It is widely believed our pets cannot contract this virus, and that they cannot spread it to humans.
How can I be careful with my pets as COVID-19 information evolves?
The situation is changing everyday and much remains unknown about COVID-19. Experts are still learning about this particular virus. Because of this, it is important to stay up to date on newly released information and to continue practicing careful hygiene before and after interacting with our pets. All pet owners are advised to practice careful hand-washing after touching your pets and after disposing of their waste.
Should I socially distance my pets from other pets or people?
There may be a small possibility that pets can transfer infected moisture droplets from one person to other people—if droplets from a human’s cough or sneeze have landed on the surface of the animal’s body or collar. While it is unlikely that animal fur will allow the virus to survive and be transmitted, the CDC has informed the public that COVID-19 can possibly survive on surfaces for minutes or even hours.
For this reason, it is important to apply social-distancing practices and stay-at-home orders to our pets during this time as well. It is best to keep our pets in their own homes and yards as much as possible and to eliminate social activity like play dates until social-distancing is no longer necessary. Going for a walk with your pooch is fine as long as you are sure to maintain at least 6 feet between him and other people and dogs.
How can I prepare for my pet’s care in advance, in case I do get sick?
If possible, make plans for your pet’s care in case you do contract the virus. You may be able to ask another person in your household, a neighbor, or a friend if they can help in the event that you become ill. Stock up on extra pet supplies in advance. Having an extra bag of food or cat litter around will ensure you won’t run out in the event that you have to completely isolate yourself at home.
What should I do if I get sick?
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, it is best to avoid contact with other people, as well as pets, until you are testing negative. If at all possible, it would be a good idea to have another member of your household take care of your pet in the event that you contract the virus. Isolate yourself from your pets, if possible, and continue practicing good hygiene.
How can my pets and I interact during the pandemic?
If you are not sick due to COVID-19, there is no need to isolate yourself from your pet. Snuggles, playing fetch, and socially-distanced walks are great ways to keep you and your pets happy and healthy. Continue to practice good hygiene by washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after interacting with your pets. Keep your pets well-groomed with regular brushing and home baths, if necessary. Continue regular at-home tooth brushing routines. Regularly clean food and water bowls, as well as bedding.
Can I bring my pet to the vet?
Our team here at Anasazi Animal Clinic is able to take patients who are needing essential care during this time. We assure you that we are taking all precautions necessary by following the guidelines of the CDC in order to provide the care for all our patients and keep everyone we come into contact with and our employees safe. Please click here to read our COVID-19 Response Statement. If you have any questions for us regarding COVID-19 and pets, please contact us, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.