The Coronavirus and Your Pets UPDATE!
Today a pug named Winston that is living with his family of 4 humans and 1 other dog and 1 cat in North Carolina just became the first dog in the United States to test positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 in humans. His mom is a pediatrician and his dad works in the ER at a local hospital. They both tested positive for COVID-19 as well as their son. (Their daughter did not; nor did the other dog and cat in the household.)
The family became concerned when Winston was coughing, gagging, sneezing and didn’t want to eat his breakfast. (And if you know Pugs not eating anything is a big deal.) The family said that the dog licks their plates, their faces and sleeps with mom and dad. Luckily Winston was only sick for a few days and is now totally fine, as is the rest of the family. But to be safe, do not let your dog interact with people outside your home, walk your dog on a leash, and stay away from dog parks at this time.
On April 22nd two pet cats in New York tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 in humans in two different households. Both cats had mild symptoms and are expected to make a full recovery. And as I mentioned in a previous blog, on April 5th, tigers at the Bronx Zoo that had some symptoms also tested positive, and a Pomeranian dog in Hong Kong tested “weak positive” with no symptoms in March.
In each case, the human was COVID-19 positive. It seems that in certain circumstances, people can spread the virus to animals, but there is currently NO EVIDENCE that it can spread from animals to humans.
If you are showing signs, symptoms or are sick with COVID-19 isolate not only from your other human family members in your household, but also (sadly) from your pet as well. If possible, have others care for your dog at this time. If that is not an option, wash your hands vigorously before touching, playing with, or feeding your dog. Don’t let your dog lick you. Refrain from cuddling with your dog and even petting your dog at this time because you could get the virus on the dog’s fur and inadvertently spread the virus that way. Do not hand feed your dog treats, or share your table scraps. Put the dog’s food in its bowl directly from the bag, and be sure the dog has fresh, clean water at all times. It is also a good idea to wear a mask around your dog to be safe. And be sure to cough or sneeze into your arm/elbow – not anywhere near your dog!
If you are healthy, here are 10 tips to help keep you and your dog virus-free:
1. Avoid letting your dog lick you in the face.
2. Do not share your table scraps with your dog.
3. Disinfect and clean your dog’s toys, food and water bowls with a pet-safe cleaner.
4. Be sure to include your dog’s needs in your family’s preparedness plan. (For example, have extra dog food and water, and any medications you dog may be taking.)
5. Wipe your dog’s paws with paw wipes after walks outside.
6. Practice good hygiene around your pets and wash your hands before handling your dog or giving your dog a bone, treats or toys.
7. Exercise – especially outdoors, is good for both you and your dog. It boosts your immune system and keeps you both from going stir crazy!
8. Laughter and play are good for the soul.
9. Remember that your dog can feel your stress, so take care of yourself: focus on positive things, what you are grateful for, and all of your blessings.
10. Wash your hands often while singing one of the following:
· How Much is that Doggy in the Window
· Who Let the Dogs Out
· Puppy Love
I hope you find these tips helpful. And as always, I wish you and your furry family members much love, health and happiness! And remember each day to find something to be grateful for, and someone to be kind to.
I truly hope this blog helps you. It is my deepest desire to be of service to you and your loved ones during this pandemic. I would love to hear from you about your situation, and any issues you may be having staying at home with your dog.
I send you my love and blessings. Stay safe, healthy and
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE CORONAVIRUS FROM
THE WORLD ORGANIZATION FOR ANIMAL HEALTH GO TO:
None of us need the added stress of our dogs behaving badly at this already challenging time. So during this pandemic I will be offering FREE mini sessions by phone or Zoom. For more information go to www.LifeCoachingForDogs
or email me at Mara@LifeCoachingForDogs.com,
or call (310) 467-2334 and ask about the special
COVID-19 FREE mini virtual session..
Wishing you, your family and your furry family members
good health and much love. xo Mara