Can Dogs Die of COVID-19?

September 17, 2020 4 min read 0 Comments

A sick Jack Russell Terrier lays on a white bed under a white over with a thermometer in its mouth and ice pack on head

Dr. Sara Ochoa author of Can Dogs Die of COVID-19?

Do you have COVID and are now worried about your pets getting this virus? There are many new findings and discoveries on this disease every day. The thought of this virus is constantly changing as new information is being discovered. While there are a few dogs that may have possibly died from COVID 19, this is a very rare occurrence.


What is the COVID-19 pandemic?

COVID 19 is the name for the new Coronavirus that was first seen starting in late 2019 in Wuhan after someone ate a bat. This new virus was highly contagious and quickly spread around the world. This virus is considered a “novel” coronavirus, meaning that humanity has no natural immunity to it.

This virus caused a pandemic affecting the entire world due to being highly contagious.  Currently, the United States is showing 5,000,000+ infected and 170,000+ deaths, rising every day This virus spreads via coughing and breathing and has led to terms like “Social Distancing” to discuss how much space should be between individuals to limit the spread of this virus.

This virus has been very difficult to treat since there is no vaccine; however, there are many vaccine companies currently worked on developing a vaccine.  It has caused a shortage in several things like medicines and respirators due to a lack of funding and treatment available. 

This virus has forced many large businesses to have employees work from home and people being without a job.  Pet owners in larger cities have been staying at home most of the time, causing a different relationship with pets.


Can Dogs get COVID-19?

While the transmission between humans and animals is low, and some dogs have tested positive for the Coronavirus. This was a very rare incident when a person who had COVID was in very close contact with their pet. Dogs and cats can be susceptible to COVID 19.

If you do test positive or you think that you possibly have the COVID virus, it would be best for someone else to take care of your pets. If you are the only person that can look after your pets, try to limit your contact with them as much as possible. Also, try to be as clean as possible around their bowls and them.

While animals do not seem to have a very large role in the spread of this virus, they can contract it if proper measures are not taken.


Can Dogs die from COVID-19?

Buddy, the dog, was the first known infected pet. Very early in his disease, he showed signs of him have a hard time breathing. He tested positive for COVID 19 about six weeks after he first start to show these signs. Buddy also was diagnosed with lymphoma. On July 11th Buddy died of what was thought to be lymphoma. His symptoms were made worse since he had contracted COVID 19.


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How to keep your dog from contracting COVID-19

There are many things that you can do to help decrease the chances of your dog getting COIVD 19.  These are just a few:

  • Keep your dog at home: While all dogs love to spend time at the dog park, try to keep them at home more.  Your dog may love to interact with other people at the dog park and can easily catch COVID from someone at the dog park. 
  • Stay clean: Washing your hands more often, especially before playing with your dog, will help decrease the chance that you can spread COVID 19 to your pet. 
  • Limit contact if your positive: If you are positive, try to find another family member or friend that can take care of your dog.  If you cannot, limit your contact and wear gloves when feeding and watering your dog
  • Follow safety regulations: By following your local safety regulations and staying clean at all times will help decrease not only your chance of getting COVID but also your dogs.
  • See Your Vet: If your pet does start to show respiratory signs, it would be best for your vet to look at your pet.  They can easily test your dog or cat for COVID 19.

By following these simple things, you can help keep your dog healthy and free of catching COVID 19

While COVID 19 is becoming very prevalent, there are a few things that you can do to keep your dog healthy and happy. Staying clean and following local rules and regulations will help keep you and your dog healthy. 

While most cases of COVID in dogs and cats show mild respiratory signs and most very quickly recover, you do not want your dog to have to deal with the signs of COVID.  Make sure that you are doing everything possible to stop the spread of this disease to other people and their pets by staying safe. 


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Meet The Author 

Dr. Sara Ochoa DVM author of Can Dogs Die of COVID-19? Why Is My Dog Itching So Much

Dr. Sara Ochoa DVM

Since she was a little girl, Dr. Ochoa knew that her dream was to become a veterinarian. With a tremendous passion and love for animals, she is now a great source of knowledge for others. Dr. Ochoa lives happily with her husband Greg and her babies: Ruby the Schnoodle and Bam-Bam the bunny.