Answer Bank: Can I get COVID-19 from my pets?
By Li Zhao

Just last month, five tigers and three lions at the Bronx Zoo in New York City tested positive for the coronavirus.

Tigers and lions are wild animals. But it seems pets are also not immune. A few pets – dogs and cats included – have also been confirmed to be infected with the virus. 

These confirmed animal cases could be a source of worry for some pet owners. If animals can get COVID-19, could humans also get it from their pets? 

In a recent study led by Professor Yoshi Kawaoka at the University of Wisconsin found that, cats specifically, are able to pass the virus to each other, but they themselves won't get sick from it. So, will humans?

As of May 16, there is no concrete evidence that a dog, a cat, or any pet can spread the virus to human beings. So, there is no reason to abandon your pets, even if they test positive. But if your pet has contracted the virus, here are some tips:

No.1: Isolate the pet from everyone else, including other pets. As I mentioned, studies have found that cats can transmit the virus to each other. So be cautious. Let a veterinarian or public health official determine when to let them out.

No.2: Wash your hands after touching your pet, or handling their food or waste.

No.3: Do not wipe or bathe your puppy or kitten with chemical disinfectants that are not approved for animal use.

(Video produced by Wang Zeyu; filmed by Fu Gaoliang; edited by Yu Qianhui)

More from CGTN's Answer Bank series:

DIY face masks: can they really protect you from the coronavirus? 

Can coronavirus patients get reinfected after a full recovery?

What to eat during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Can I get coronavirus from deliveries?