Recently, a tiger tested positive for COVID 19 at the Bronx Zoo. It is believed that the tiger caught the virus from a keeper at the zoo, who was also COVID 19 positive but not showing symptoms.
This has obviously led to the question: “Can domestic pet cats (and dogs)” catch COVID 19?”
There are well over a million people who have been tested for positive for COVID 19 and only four pets have (two dogs and two cats) all from homes with COVID 19 positive owners.
An animal health lab, IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., which is developing a diagnostic test for COVID-19 in pets, released a statement on March 13th that out of thousands of samples from cats and dogs with upper respiratory symptoms none tested positive for COVID-19.
Likewise, Trupanion, a pet insurance company with 500,000 members has seen no uptick in claims for respiratory diseases in pets.
The advice from the CDC is that there is no evidence that pets can spread COVID 19 to humans or become sick with COVID 19. “CDC is aware of a very small number of pets, including dogs and cats, outside the United States reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 after close contact with people with COVID-19. CDC has not received any reports of pets becoming sick with COVID-19 in the United States. To date, there is no evidence that pets can spread the virus to people.”
If a pet owner does become sick with COVID-19, it is recommended that that they restrict contact just like they would if they were around other humans. If possible, have another member of the household look after pets. It is also recommended that pet owners who are sick should avoid petting, snuggling, being kissed, and sharing food. If sick pet owners must interact with their pets, it is recommended that they wear a face mask and wash their hands before and after.
The doctors and staff, like everyone else, are watching the situation closely. However, our advice and recommendations based on information from the CDC’s website, along with the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) website.
At Lone Mountain Animal Hospital, we have made a number of changes to respond to this crisis.
We have temporarily changed our hours to 7AM – 5PM, Monday through Saturday, and 8AM – 4PM on Sundays.
We are not allowing clients into the building and have instituted curbside-service.
We will collect your pet from you in the parking lot next to your car (please remember your social distance), and we will communicate with you by phone. Payment by credit card will be made over the phone. Please just call us on 702-645-3116, and we will advise you as to each step of the process when you arrive. Our lobby doors will be locked.
Please keep your phone handy and answer blocked calls and text messages during your appointment – that is how we will be communicating with you.
If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 we ask that you try to have another member of your household bring your pet in.
We have temporarily be suspended our grooming services until further notice.
We are accepting boarders and day boarders on a case-by-case basis.
Thank you for your understanding, and support, during this difficult time. We are making these changes to try and keep both our clients and our staff safe, while still being able to look after pets.
Obviously, this is a very difficult time for everyone.
We take our responsibilities to the pet community in Las Vegas, and the surrounding area, very seriously indeed, just as seriously as we take our responsibilities to our doctors and staff.
The State of Nevada considers veterinarians an essential service…
As per NRS 414.060; NRS 414.070; Declaration of Emergency, Directive 003, March 20, 2020 section 1(a), “Essential Licensed Business” includes essential healthcare operations such as veterinary services.
… so do we.
All of our staff have their temperature checked before starting their shift, and self-check throughout the day.
We have an almost constant cleaning regiment in place throughout the hospital.
Our staff wears masks at all times, both inside and outside of the building.
We have a delivery service for food, medications, and pets.
We also have an online store through our website.
For the moment we are providing routine services, including dentals as part of our dental special. However, if you would prefer not to come in at this time, we will be continuing the dental special to later in the year.
Lone Mountain has updated our own internal protocols, including cleaning and staff interactions, and we would ask clients to understand if handshakes and hugs are no longer the norm for the time being.
This is obviously a rapidly evolving situation and so things are changing day today, but our intention is to be there for you and your pet.