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How to Care for Your Pets if You Have Coronavirus

What should you do with your pets if you or a family member becomes infected with Coronavirus? The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).

First: Can Pets Catch or Transmit the Coronavirus?

While the first infections of COVID-19 were linked to the live animal market in Wuhan, China, and while the virus spreads among people, the CDC says that at this time there is no evidence that pets can become a source of infection for the virus. There is also no evidence that pets can spread Coronavirus, but, as we’ve seen in the news, at least two dogs have tested positive for Coronavirus after their owners did. One, the 17 year old Pomeranian, died two days after leaving quarantine, but experts believe it died for other reasons, including the stress of quarantine and its age. 

It’s reasonable to believe that if you don’t take your dog in public or let it come into contact with people (who may or may not be infected with the Coronavirus) other than your household members, the odds that your pup or kitties were to become infected are fairly unlikely. That’s also assuming no one in your home is infected. As responsible and loving pet parents, we want to make sure that we don’t expose our pets to the virus should we fall ill with it, so please keep your pets home and let them practice social distancing, too. 

Despite all of our preparations, we still might contract COVID-19. According to the CDC and  AVMA, if you should contract coronavirus (either suspected or confirmed), then:

Out of an abundance of caution, it is recommended that those ill with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus. Have another member of your household take care of walking, feeding, and playing with your pet. If you have a service animal or you must care for your pet, then wear a facemask; don’t share food, kiss, or hug them; and wash your hands before and after any contact with them.”

If you are not ill with COVID-19, you can interact with your pet as you normally would, including walking, feeding, and playing. You should continue to practice good hygiene during those interactions (e.g., wash hands before and after interacting with your pet; ensure your pet is kept well-groomed; regularly clean your pet’s food and water bowls, bedding material, and toys).

The CDC elaborates a bit on what the research says about whether or not pets or other animals can become ill with COVID-19, or spread it:

Although there have not been reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19, it is still recommended that people sick with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus. This can help ensure both you and your animals stay healthy.

When possible, have another member of your household care for your animals while you are sick. Avoid contact with your pet including, petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, and sharing food. If you must care for your pet or be around animals while you are sick, wash your hands before and after you interact with them. For more information visit: What to Do if You are Sick.

As of right now, the CDC is not recommending routine testing of pets for COVID-19.

What to Do if You Are Sick with COVID-19:

The CDC has provided these easy to understand guidelines below for anyone infected in a multi-person home. Following these instructions should help mitigate the spread of the virus among your family members.

  • If  you must care for your pet or be around animals while you are sick, wash your hands before and after you interact with pets and wear a face mask.  Avoid petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, and sharing food.
  • If you don’t have anyone to care for your pet and you need to go to the hospital, you have several options. You can contact your veterinarian and ask them to board your pet. If they are full and you have a dog, you can board them in several facilities in Miami-Dade County.  We are offering boarding for dogs under 30 pounds who have proof of Rabies, Bordatella, and DHPP.

We reached out to several veterinarians and the following practices will board pets for pet parents needing to go to the hospital. Of course, each practice will require that the dog be bathed upon admission at the owner’s expense. We will keep updating the list.

Sable Chase Animal Clinic
Sable Chase Animal Clinic is open at this time.
  • If you are exposed to coronavirus and heading to the hospital, they will take your pup.
  • They will of course bathe it right away and board the dog.
  • You must be a client and up to date on vaccines. If you’re not a client, you must bring proof of all vaccinations.
  • Please call in advance. No one is allowed in the building; someone will come out to take the pup. They won’t take your leash.
South Miami Animal Clinic
Starting Tuesday, April 7, South Miami Animal Clinic will be limiting hours of operation. They will be open from 8:30am – 3:00pm Tuesdays through Saturdays.

“Same days of the week but shorter hours per day. If possible, please schedule your appointment online by clicking here or calling 305.667.7238.
If you need prescription drugs or food, please call ahead or try our online store and check delivery dates.
This will stay in effect until Saturday, May 2nd. But we will update our website and social media if this changes.”

  • If you are exposed to coronavirus and heading to the hospital, they will take your pup.
  • They will of course bathe it right away and board the dog.
  • You must be a client and up to date on vaccines. If you’re not a client, you must bring proof of all vaccinations.
  • Please call in advance. No one is allowed in the building; someone will come out to take the pup. They won’t take your leash.
D.O.G. Hotels:
All locations of D.O.G. Hotels are open and serving pup owners! Their hours remain the same- all information on their website is up to date. As always, all dogs have to be up to date on their vaccinations. They are currently only allowing one client in the lobby at a time. If you are ill, these precautions apply:
  • Call before you bring your dog.
  • They are not taking any dogs’ personal belongings.
  • Just bring food in plastic bags- no containers, please.
  • They will provide beds, toys, and bowls
Dogtown:
Dogtown’s two locations are currently closed, with tentative plans to open the Brickell location sometime this month. Please call them to talk to the owner directly about your needs:  (305) 448-5225
Somi Pet Resort is still open for boarding and daycare, but there is no daycare available on Sundays. They have always disinfected the premises carefully, and are still disinfecting everything. They will take your pup if you can’t care for your pet. There are submission forms online that require your basic information so they can create a file. Please fill it out for your pup, too, and email over your pet’s vaccination paperwork. You’ll get a call to confirm their stay, at which time you’ll have to put down a $50 deposit.

Their precautions include:
  • Lobby is closed.
  • Curbside pick up and drop off.
  • Disinfecting everything here.
Any pet parent infected with Covid-19 would have to let the staff know. There is a side door that anyone who is sick would have to use- you would give your pup to them there. You will be fully guided by staff, and everything would be done verbally over the phone, prior to bringing your pet. The only contact would be to sign off on the forms. Somi Pet Resort will give your dog a bath immediately when they get into the facility.  They are limiting possessions, only allowing food Ziploc bags. They will provide food and water bowls, etc.
Equipaws Pet Services
We will board small dog under 30 pounds in our homes. We do require for all new clients to register their pets and to have an online Meet & Greet via Zoom. You can start the process here, or you can call us at 305.794.3733 for more information.
  • We will wear masks upon accepting the pups and also require the dogs to have baths upon drop off.
  • Proof of vaccinations are also required, including Rabies, Bordatella, DHPP.
  • We will only be taking food in plastic bags, and will provide bowls and bedding.

 

Covid 19 fact sheet

Coronavirus and pets

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