Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for UK dog owners
April 03, 2020
Can dogs catch Coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Although there has been a couple of high profile cases of dogs testing positive for COVID-19, there’s no evidence to suggest they can get sick or transmit the virus. So there’s no need to worry about your dog catching it. The virus could, of course, survive on your dog’s fur just as it can on surfaces, so this should be taken into consideration when you’re handling your dog. As there’s some evidence to suggest cats are slightly more susceptible to contracting the virus, government advice states that you should wash your hands before and after any contact with your cat. So I’d say there’s no harm in doing the same with your other pets too.
Can I exercise my dog during the lockdown?
You will have to use your daily exercise allowance to also exercise your dog at the same time. No trips to the beach, no jumping in the car and taking your dog to a park - you need to carry out your exercise as close to your home as possible. You should also keep your dog on a lead to ensure you can control the 2-metre distancing guidelines.
What if I’m self-isolating? How do I to exercise my dog?
The government advice states that in these circumstances you can ask someone else to walk your dog for you. It won’t count towards that person’s daily exercise allowance as they’d be providing care to someone. The person walking the dog should wash their hands before and after handling your dog (as should you) and you should maintain the 2-metre distancing rules when handing over your dog. If you’ve got a garden you could let your dog get some exercise there. If you’re fit and able you could practice fetching to perfection!
Can I take my dog to the vet?
All non-essential trips to the vet have been ruled out. So if it is not an emergency you’ll have to wait until the current lockdown period is over. So if your dog has their booster needles due, for example, you might have to delay it for a while, unfortunatly. The best advice would be to discuss these issues with your vet. If your dog requires repeat prescriptions you should call the vet to arrange for these to be posted out.
Should I stay 2-metres away from my dog?
If you’re not showing any symptoms of coronavirus there is no need to distance yourself from your dog. If you are in isolation and experiencing symptoms it is best to refrain from snuggling up to your dog or having kisses etc. Although your dog won’t be at risk of contracting the virus, the virus could potentially survive for a period on their fur. There’s then the potential for that to infect anyone else in contact with your dog.