First UK case of Covid-19 confirmed in pet dog

Image of sleepy puppy

A pet dog has contracted Covid-19 in the UK’s first confirmed case – 3rd November 2021.

Professor Christine Middlemiss, the UK’s Chief Veterinary Officer, has confirmed that tests conducted at one of the One Health EJP partner institutes, the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA, Weybridge, Surrey) detected SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for Covid-19, in a pet dog.

It is thought that the dog caught the virus from its owners who had previously tested positive for Covid-19 and there is no evidence so far that pets transmit SARS-CoV-2 to other pets or people. The advice from UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is for people to continue washing their hands regularly, including before and after contact with animals.

The case has been reported to the World Organisation for Animal Health in line with international commitments. There have been a very small number of confirmed cases in pets in other countries in Europe, North America, and Asia; the first case of a Covid-19 positive dog being reported in April 2020, in Hong Kong.

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