Jeanne D’Esposito has three cats and a canine — “the menagerie,” as she calls her pets. As COVID-19 raced by way of the human inhabitants, she apprehensive about passing the virus to the felines and canine in her household.

Early within the pandemic, D’Esposito, 57, of Malverne, New York, had learn some research about zoo lions and tigers getting COVID-19 and assumed that meant her cats may very well be in danger.

“I did fear about that, however there’s solely a lot you are able to do,” she says. “It isn’t like you’ll be able to put a masks on a cat.”

Though unusual, it seems the virus that causes COVID-19 will be transmitted from people to domesticated cats, in response to newly printed analysis from the UK. A second latest examine from Brazil discovered each canines and cats had contracted the virus in households the place people had COVID-19.

The U.Okay. examine, which seems in VetRecord, detected SARS-CoV-2 final 12 months in two cats that had developed gentle or extreme respiratory illness. The genetic make-up of the feline virus intently resembled that of the human SARS-CoV-2 virus, indicating that the virus seemingly jumped from an contaminated individual to a cat.

“These findings point out that human-to-cat transmission of SARS-CoV-2 occurred through the COVID-19 pandemic within the U.Okay., with the contaminated cats displaying gentle or extreme respiratory illness,” in response to an announcement from Margaret Hosie, a professor of comparative virology on the Medical Analysis Council-College of Glasgow Centre for Virus Analysis. “Given the power of the coronavirus to contaminate companion animals, it is going to be vital to watch for human-to-cat, cat-to-cat and cat-to-human transmission.”

Coronavirus jumps from people to pets

The Brazil examine by researchers in Rio de Janeiro and printed by Plos One, discovered that between Might and October 2020, within the households of 21 sufferers with COVID-19 who had been studied, 9 canines out of 29 and 4 cats out of 10 had been contaminated with the virus. Signs included sneezing, coughing and diarrhea, however some animals confirmed no indicators of the virus.

Within the U.Okay. examine of the 2 cats discovered with the virus, one was a 4-month-old feminine ragdoll kitten that didn’t survive. The kitten’s proprietor had developed signs according to SARS-CoV-2 weeks earlier than the cat turned sick. The proprietor, nevertheless, had not been examined for coronavirus. The second cat (a 6-year-old feminine Siamese) survived. Considered one of its homeowners examined constructive for SARS-CoV-2, however a second cat within the family confirmed no indicators of an infection.


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