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IHA: COVID-19 and your pets

It's not clear yet if, or whether, our beloved pets will be carriers of COVID-19, so Interior Health has offered some basic guidelines for pet owners in the following release:

Every Person Matters is a saying we have here at Interior Health. And we take it pretty seriously.

Although we don’t provide health-care services to animals, we do care for a lot of animal lovers, and we realize that many of the people in our health region have questions about COVID-19 and pets.

To help cut through the noise, we went to one of the experts. Here is what Health Canada has to say on the topic:

There is currently no evidence that this virus is circulating in animals in Canada. It is possible that some types of animals may be able to get infected with COVID-19, but it is not yet clear whether they would show symptoms.

There are still many unknowns about COVID-19 and this is an area that remains to be studied and understood. Until this happens, if you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and have a pet or other animal:

  • avoid close contact with them
  • do not snuggle or kiss them, or let them lick you, sit on your lap, or sleep in your bed
  • avoid coughing and sneezing on your animals
  • have another member of your household care for your animals
  • if this is not possible, always wash your hands before touching or feeding them
  • limit your animal’s contact with other people and animals
  • this may mean keeping them indoors

For the latest information and recommendations, visit the Health Canada website.