Animals unlikely to spread Covid-19 to humans, but precautions can help keep people and their pets safe, says CDC

There's no evidence that animals are playing a significant role in the spread of coronavirus to humans, but precautions can help keep people and their pets s...

Posted: Feb 2, 2021 10:30 AM
Updated: Feb 2, 2021 12:09 PM

There's no evidence that animals are playing a significant role in the spread of coronavirus to humans, but precautions can help keep people and their pets safe, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials said Monday.

"Based on limited information available to date, the risk of animals, including pets, spreading Covid-19 to people is considered to be low," CDC official Dr. Casey Barton Behravesh said during a briefing Monday.

Evidence suggests that Covid-19 likely originated in animals before becoming widespread among humans.

"As of the middle of January, we're aware of 187 animals from 22 countries with a confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection," Behravesh said, noting those numbers do not include mink on mink farms. She added that no animal deaths have yet been linked to the virus.

The CDC is closely tracking research on coronavirus infections in animals and has categorized some animals based off their risk of infection. Animals that are highly susceptible to the virus include cats, hamsters, non-human primates, rabbits, mink and deer, Behravesh said.

Protecting Pets

Behravesh said that companion animals, especially cats and dogs, are the leading group of animal species impacted by coronavirus.

While animal-to-human transmission risk is low, people can spread coronavirus to pets, Behravesh said.

The CDC recommends people treat pets the same way they would human family members to protect them from Covid-19, by limiting contact with those outside the household. The agency advises keeping cats inside and preventing other pets from roaming freely. Masks should not be put on pets, as they could cause harm.

Infected people should avoid contact with pets, meaning no kissing, snuggling or sleeping in the same bed, the CDC says. In fact, people who have coronavirus should try to arrange for another household member to take care of pets. If that's not possible, the CDC says people should wear masks when interacting with their pets.

People who suspect their pets may have coronavirus should consult with a veterinarian. Behravesh noted that among 93 cases of Covid-19 in cats and dogs in the US, 53% showed no symptoms. The most common symptoms reported in animals have been respiratory signs, like coughing or sneezing. Other symptoms reported include fever, lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea.

Pets who have tested positive for coronavirus should be isolated away from humans and other animals, Behravesh said.

There's no evidence that pets are carrying or spreading coronavirus on their skin or hair, and it's important not to wipe or bathe pets with chemical disinfectants, Behravesh said.

"Pet poison controls have actually had an increase in calls due to these types of exposures among pets," she said.

The US Food and Drug Administration has not approved any drugs for the treatment or prevention of Covid-19 in animals, Behravesh noted.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 307519

Reported Deaths: 7096
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20772248
Hinds19888408
Harrison17489302
Rankin13311275
Jackson13097243
Madison9895210
Lee9856169
Jones8290160
Forrest7523146
Lauderdale7187237
Lowndes6262144
Lamar610584
Lafayette6027117
Washington5280132
Bolivar4769129
Oktibbeha455297
Panola4442103
Pearl River4419139
Warren4280118
Marshall4273100
Pontotoc416472
Monroe4057132
Union403675
Neshoba3987176
Lincoln3869108
Hancock372085
Leflore3468124
Sunflower329389
Tate322681
Pike3180104
Scott310572
Yazoo304368
Alcorn297764
Itawamba296776
Copiah292965
Coahoma289677
Simpson287484
Tippah284668
Prentiss275659
Marion265779
Wayne261341
Leake261073
Grenada254982
Covington254580
Adams245882
Newton244859
George237847
Winston225981
Tishomingo222067
Jasper219748
Attala213273
Chickasaw204857
Holmes186471
Clay182454
Stone179131
Clarke176876
Tallahatchie175240
Calhoun163230
Yalobusha158836
Smith158534
Walthall130543
Greene129433
Lawrence126223
Noxubee125933
Montgomery125542
Perry125138
Carroll120826
Amite120041
Webster113432
Jefferson Davis105432
Tunica102525
Claiborne101330
Benton97225
Kemper95226
Humphreys94332
Franklin81823
Quitman78916
Choctaw72817
Jefferson64828
Wilkinson64727
Sharkey49617
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 518899

Reported Deaths: 10712
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson753641487
Mobile37763798
Madison33859494
Tuscaloosa25266443
Montgomery23962565
Shelby23106238
Baldwin20631300
Lee15524165
Calhoun14284311
Morgan14139268
Etowah13662345
Marshall11957219
Houston10380278
Elmore9993200
Limestone9811147
Cullman9470188
St. Clair9426234
Lauderdale9215227
DeKalb8746181
Talladega8058171
Walker7087275
Jackson6754110
Autauga6723103
Blount6483135
Colbert6203130
Coffee5399112
Dale4767110
Russell428838
Franklin419982
Chilton4083109
Covington4053114
Tallapoosa3893146
Escambia387674
Dallas3527149
Chambers3499122
Clarke346360
Marion3065100
Pike305875
Lawrence295395
Winston272372
Bibb256258
Marengo248661
Geneva245875
Pickens232959
Barbour224755
Hale218775
Butler212266
Fayette208960
Henry187844
Cherokee182044
Randolph176941
Monroe171440
Washington164038
Macon154548
Clay149354
Crenshaw149257
Cleburne146041
Lamar139234
Lowndes136453
Wilcox124327
Bullock121340
Conecuh109028
Perry107926
Sumter102932
Coosa99228
Greene90734
Choctaw58724
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A cold front will move into our area during our Tuesday. This front will bring some chances for some rain and isolated thunderstorms for our Tuesday night. Some of the activity will linger in our area into our Wednesday.
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