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Updated: April 24th, 2020
In alignment with the official statement issued by the maker of products including Lysol, under no circumstances should disinfectant products be administered into the human body or into the bodies of animals, including your pets.
April 23rd, 2020
Last night, the US CDC and USDA announced the first confirmed US cases in companion animals of the virus that causes COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2). Two pet cats from separate households had mild respiratory illness, presumably other more common causes of illness were ruled out, and both tested positive for the virus at the USDA international reference laboratory NVSL. Both cats are expected to make a full recovery. The owner of one cat tested positive for the COVID-19 virus before the cat developed clinical signs. No one tested positive in the other cat’s household, but it is suspected that the virus may have been transmitted to the cat by an asymptomatic or mildly ill household member or through contact with an infected person outside its home.
This does not change the fact that the predominant route of transmission of COVID-19 is human to human. At this time there is no evidence that animals play a significant role in spreading this disease. There is a low risk of pets becoming sick from infected humans – but there have still only been a handful of confirmed companion animal cases despite millions of human cases. The CDC recommendations remain the same:
If you are sick with COVID-19 (either suspect or confirmed with a test):
Remain calm, but vigilant in your hygiene and social distancing from other people and their pets. Treat your pets as you would any other member of your household – with love and concern for their health. And realize that we will get through this – apart physically, but together in spirit.
Centers for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/animals.html
US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Press Release: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/newsroom/news/sa_by_date/sa-2020/sars-cov-2-animals
USDA chart of confirmed positive animal cases in the United States: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/SA_One_Health/sars-cov-2-animals-us
World Organisation for Animal Health: https://www.oie.int/scientific-expertise/specific-information-and-recommendations/questions-and-answers-on-2019novel-coronavirus/
American Veterinary Medical Association: https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/animal-health-and-welfare/covid-19/sars-cov-2-animals-including-pets