Social distancing also applies to pets during coronavirus pandemic, veterinarian says

Pets and Animals

LOS ANGELES (KTLA) – As the world is adapting to the new restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, a veterinarian says people should also be taking precautions when it comes to pets.

While there is belief that COVID-19 mutated from an animal — likely a bat — the virus is species-specific, according to Los Angeles-based veterinarian Dr. Jeff Werber, meaning dogs and cats cannot get sick from it.

RELATED: Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

“The dog won’t get sick, the cat won’t get sick. However, the virus particles can live on them for awhile,” Werber said.

The lifespan of those particles is why owners need to take precautions, Weber said.

“If the virus particles is on the dog, and say that dog licks a person’s hands who is infected and then comes and licks you in the face, like dogs like to do, then it is possible it could be transmitted,” Werber explained.

In order to limit contagion, Weber said social distancing should also be extended to pets. Owners walking their dogs should try and stay away from other people and their dogs on walks, avoid dog parks, doggy daycares and limit or stop trips to the groomers.

Werber said animal hospitals and veterinarians are also limiting the number of pets they are seeing.

“I heard at one hospital the nurse is going out to the car, taking the dog from the car and bringing it to the hospital, and you don’t even get to go into the office,” he explained.

Weber also urged pet owners to keep animals clean through bathing, and also suggested holding off on elective procedures including spay and neutering.

More headlines from CBS17.com:

For more stories like this that matter to you, click here to download the CBS 17 News app for free.

Watch live newscasts, get breaking news and sign up for push alerts – download now

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories