Should I put my pet in quarantine?

You probably never imagined that you would be concerned about putting your pet in quarantine. As the pandemic stretches well beyond what we imagined, you must keep your pet’s health in mind. Each day you take steps to keep your family safe. As your pet is a member of your family, he deserves the same level of care and concern.

As some animals have tested positive for the virus, it’s important to do all you can to protect them from COVID-19 exposure. Depending on your circumstances, that might mean putting your pet in quarantine in an isolated area in your home. In most cases, it just means paying attention and taking basic safety precautions.

CDC Recommendations to Keep Your Pet Safe

Based on early data, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention determined that humans can spread COVID-19 to their pets. This usually happens when pets and infected humans engage in close behaviors such as snuggling, kissing, or sharing the same bed. One of the issues with potential pet exposure is that humans become contagious before they show symptoms. That means that it’s possible for you to pass the virus to your pet before you realize you’re sick.

The CDC has found little evidence that pets generate a similar risk for humans. To minimize the chances of unknowingly exposing your pet to the virus, you must protect them as you would any other member of your family.

  • Don’t let your pet interact with people outside of your home.
  • If you take your dog for a walk or to the park, consider bringing your own water so he won’t have to share a common water source.
  • Use a leash and keep your pet at least six feet away from people and their pets.
  • Avoid large gatherings.
  • Keep your pet clean, but avoid using sanitizers, alcohol, peroxide, or other disinfectants or cleaners on your pet.
  • Don’t put a mask on your pet.

How Should You Care For Your Pet if You Get the Virus?

If you become infected with COVID-19, it’s even more important to look out for your pet.

  • Distance yourself from your pet as much as possible. If your vet recommends it, put your pet in quarantine in your home.
  • Find someone else to care for your pet and keep their living area clean and disinfected
  • If you must care for your pet while you’re sick, maintain good hygiene. Wash your hands before and after coming into contact with your pet.

What Should You Do if Your Pet Tests Positive?

If your pet shows COVID-19 symptoms, you should contact your veterinarian for advice on how to proceed. Like humans, pets may or may not show symptoms. If they show symptoms (fever, coughing, breathing difficulties, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.) talk to your vet about testing. Your vet may recommend additional precautions.

  • Put your pet in quarantine in an unused bathroom or utility room. Isolate them from family members and other pets.
  • Restrict non-resident visits to your home.
  • Allow your pet outdoors for bathroom breaks only. If possible avoid leaving your yard.
  • Wear gloves when cleaning litter boxes or picking up your dog’s waste.
  • Your vet will help you determine if you have the accommodations to care for your pet in your home. (isolation area, vulnerable family members, appropriate protective gear.)
  • As COVID-19 is on the list of Connecticut Reportable Diseases for animals. Your veterinarian must report your pet’s positive COVID-19 results to the State Veterinarian. The state vet then reports it to the USDA.

Contact Hebron Veterinary Hospital

Animals become infected with COVID-19 so infrequently, even if your pet has symptoms they are likely a sign of a traditional illness. It’s best to be sure. If your pet has been exposed to the virus, contact your veterinarian to discuss putting your pet in quarantine, medication, and other options.

Call us at (860) 228-4324 if you have questions about COVID-19, or simply visit our contact page. We’re also available for regular checkups and examinations.