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Is it safe having pets around?

The recent increase of people testing positive for the Coronavirus has seen a new surge from pet owners who are taking their pets to animal welfare due to the fear of contracting Covid-19 from the animal.

Locally this is also the case as Kleinmond Animal Welfare Society (Kaws) says that a lot of pet owners feel insecure due to Covid-19 and wonder if their pets may even pass the virus on to humans.

According to the World Health Organisation there is no evidence that a dog, cat or any pet can transmit Covid-19. Covid-19 is mainly spread through droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks.

The American Veterinary Medical Association (Avma) confirmed that they are not overly concerned about people contracting Covid-19 through contact with dogs and cats. “The virus survives best on smooth surfaces, such as counter tops and doorknobs. Porous materials, such as pet fur, tend to absorb and trap pathogens, making it harder to contract them through touch,” reads a press release by Avma.

The Hermanus Animal Welfare Society (Haws) adds that pet owners should always practise good hygiene by washing their hands with soap and water after petting and playing with their pets.

Kaws concurs with the views expressed by the WHO and Avma and states we all need the emotional support and unconditional love given to us by our dogs and cats. “We have no doubt that all pets are absolutely delighted to have their family home with them, to play with them and to cuddle them. Please don’t give them away, or surrender them, as the comfort and support which a much-loved pet will bring you in these trying times is immeasurable. Be safe and love your pets as much as they love you,” adds Kaws.

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