Latest on Pets and COVID-19
Human corona virus, COVID-19, according to this press release (below) from the diagnostic laboratory IDEXX, has not seen a single positive result in dogs or cats, after testing thousands. IDEXX recommends against testing pets for COVID-19 as pets with respiratory signs are best seeing their own veterinarian, who can then advise on appropriate diagnostics for likely respiratory problems of dogs and cats. Meanwhile the Pomeranian in Hong Kong that tested positive for COVID-19 may indeed have a low level infection of COVID-19.
With all that. Dr. Gail Golab, chief scientific officer at the American Veterinary Medical Association joins me on WGN Radio, Sunday morning 5:30 AM CDT to make heads or tails of all this. Listen HERE, at 720 AM live or I will later Sunday post the podcast on this blog. Here is the IDEXX release:
IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. (NASDAQ: IDXX), a global leader in veterinary diagnostics and software, today announced that the company has seen no positive results in pets to date of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus strain responsible for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) respiratory outbreak in humans. IDEXX evaluated thousands of canine and feline specimens during validation of a new veterinary test system for the COVID-19 virus. The specimens used for test development and validation were obtained from specimens submitted to IDEXX Reference Laboratories for PCR testing.
These new test results align with the current expert understanding that COVID-19 is primarily transmitted person-to-person and supports the recommendation against testing pets for the COVID-19 virus. For dogs or cats presenting with respiratory signs, the recommendation is to contact a veterinarian to test for more common respiratory pathogens.
“Should leading health authorities determine it is clinically relevant to test pets for the COVID-19 virus, IDEXX will be ready to make the IDEXX SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) RealPCR™ Test available,” said Jay Mazelsky, President and Chief Executive Officer of IDEXX Laboratories. “Pets are important members of our family, and we want to keep them healthy and safe. We will continue to monitor COVID-19 and pet health across our global IDEXX Reference Laboratories network as this situation evolves.”
IDEXX Reference Laboratories is a global network of more than 80 laboratories united by a shared commitment to advancing pet care. IDEXX never stops looking for new ways to do more and discover more to enhance the health and well-being of pets, people, and livestock. Customers worldwide benefit from the company’s sophisticated network of veterinary reference laboratories in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, South Africa, Brazil, and across Europe, which offer the most complete and advanced menu of tests in the industry.
For the most up-to-date information on the risk of COVID-19 virus transmission to animals and COVID-19 disease, please visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Veterinary Medical Association, or the World Organisation for Animal Health COVID-19 resource pages.