The Pet Owner’s Coronavirus Blog
Ever since the first reports of a novel flu-like virus originating in China, Haines Road Animal Hospital has continued to monitor the COVID-19 investigations and new developments. We are making every effort to keep our clients and staff healthy, so that we may continue to service our community.
COVID-19 and your pet:
Pet owner’s fears were exacerbated after reports of a dog in Hong Kong, China was quarantined due to “weak-positive” test result for the virus. While a “weak positive” indicates viral infection, it does not mean that your domestic pet can transmit the virus to other animals – including humans! According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), no animals in the United States have been identified with the virus, and there is no evidence that dogs or other pets can contract or spread COVID-19 (AVMA).
However, this does not mean we shouldn’t take the same precautions with our pets that we would take after interacting with other humans. For example, you should still wash your hands with soap and water after touching your pet and avoid direct kisses to the face. The AVMA recommends that those ill with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus.
As always, animal owners should continue to include their pets in emergency preparedness planning, including keeping a two-week supply of food and medications on hand. We recommend always keeping an emergency kit on hand in the event of evacuations or, in this case, quarantine/self-isolation that prevents you from venturing into public spaces.
Prevention is key:
Our veterinary team is taking every precaution to keep our staff and community healthy. You may be seeing hand sanitizer pumps at every corner of the hospital or much of the staff continuously wiping down every surface and tool with disinfectant wipes. As we continue to monitor coronavirus developments, we will also continue to implement any measures necessary to avoid exposure and transmission. We ask that our clients take the same preventative measures and stay vigilant in their sanitary practices. If you are experiencing any signs of respiratory illness, we advise that you follow the directions of the health authorities. We are happy to reschedule any upcoming appointments for a future date. Please take a moment to review some of the safety measures in place, effective immediately, before visiting our hospital:
1. Please call from your vehicle when you arrive to check-in and stay in your car with your pet until a tech comes out to bring you in.
2. Only one person per pet(s) will be permitted while visiting for any scheduled appointment.
3. We are happy to perform your pet’s procedures while you wait in your car. We can check you out curbside and communicate your pet’s health via phone.
4. Maintain some distance between each other and avoid any physical touching such as handshakes.
As always, if your pet is displaying any symptoms indicative of an illness, please call your veterinarian to schedule an exam.