Rumours have been circulating on the internet that pets can also be carriers of the highly contagious coronavirus.

In fact, Hong Kong encourages owners of pets with COVID-19 to quarantine their furry friends too.

But before you panic, do note that there has been little to no evidence to suggest that pets can contract and spread the disease.

Cat in Hong Kong Tested Positive for COVID-19 After Owner Confirmed to be Positive

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A pet cat has tested positive for the COVID-19 in Hong Kong after its owner had contracted the virus, according to the city’s Agricultural and Fisheries department.

Arguably the most alarming part is that the cat has not shown any symptoms of the virus.

However, the department said that at this time, there is no evidence that pet animals can be a source of the COVID-19.

Thus, they emphasise that owners should not panic and abandon their pets.

WHO Says No Evidence That Pets Can Transmit COVID-19

The World Health Organisation also makes it known on their website that there is no evidence that a dog, cat or any pet is able to transmit the COVID-19.

The cat is the third animal to test positive for the COVID-19 in Hong Kong.

There have been two other cases in which two dogs tested weak positive or positive after repeated tests for the coronavirus.

The authorities have said that the cat will continue to be monitored and examined.

Samples collected from the cat’s mouth, nose and rectum have tested positive for COVID-19 after it was sent to quarantine on 30 March.

Only 1 Other Case Of COVID-19 In A Cat

To date, there has only been 1 other case of the coronavirus in a cat, which occurred in Belgium.

The cat is believed to have contracted the disease from its owner, according to a statement released by the Hong Kong Veterinary Association (HKVA).

Before you panic, The Veterinary Association said that the most probable way pets would contract the virus would be from their owners or other people that they come into contact with.

Further, it is believed that the cases are not a cause of alarm.

A Few Things You Can Do As A Pet Owner

However, there are a few things you can do as a pet owner to safeguard yourself and your furry friend.

Dr Florence Chan, secretary of the HKVA’s executive committee, advised pet owners to wash their hands after coming into contact with their pets and avoid taking their animals to dirty places.

She also advised owners to wash their pets’ paws with soap after taking them outside.

She said that if owners found this insufficient, they could put “shoes” on their pets’ paws that could be removed and sanitised separately.

Image: Guff

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