RSPCA responds to news that the first pet cat in the UK has tested positive for COVID-19

The RSPCA responds to the latest news about the first pet cat to test positive for COVID-19

“We would like to reassure pet owners that despite the news that a pet cat has tested positive for Coronavirus in the UK, there is still no evidence to suggest that people can catch COVID-19 from their pets.

“A very small number of animals have been reported to have tested positive for, or shown symptoms of, COVID-19. Some of these animals were deliberately exposed to the disease in an artificial setting which did not represent real life. The others were cases where the virus has reportedly been passed from a person to an animal. Importantly, to date, there is no known evidence of the virus passing from pets to humans.

“Therefore, we would urge people not to be alarmed and to continue to take sensible precautions, as we would advise at any time, such as washing your hands before and after stroking your cat. This is because like human hands, pet fur could carry the virus and so it is important to adopt good hygiene when interacting with our pets, especially if they could have been in contact with other people.  This is good advice at any time and not specific to the Coronavirus situation. This means thoroughly washing hands with soap and water after interacting with them and avoiding being kissed or licked and sharing food with them.

“Information on how pet owners can take steps to keep themselves and their animals as safe as possible during this time can be found on our website: https://www.rspca.org.uk/-/we-re-reassuring-cat-owners-during-coronavirus-crisis