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The release also included recommendations for pet owners from Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., MPH. These include:
- Practice normal preventative actions to stay healthy around your pets. At this point there is no evidence that companion animals can spread the coronavirus.
- Identify backup caretakers for pets if you are confirmed to have COVID-19.
- Wear a well-fitted mask and limit interaction with pets and other animals if you are confirmed to have the coronavirus and identified by public health officials as requiring home care and isolation.
- Use practical measures to protect yourself, your family and your pets from this or any other contagious illness.
- Vaccinate your pets to protect them from other diseases.
The American Veterinary Medical Association still recommends that you limit contact with animals if you are confirmed to have the coronavirus.
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So, if you are tested positive for the disease, have another member of the household take care of walking, feeding and playing with your pet. If it is a service animal, or you have to take care of your pet yourself, wear a facemask.
Either way, don’t share food, kiss or hug them, and wash your hands before and after any contact with your pet or service animal. You also should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people or pets in the home.
These recommendations are just a precaution, though. The AVMA stressed that although they do recommend these things, there is still no evidence that pets can spread the coronavirus to other animals or people.
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However, the AVMA also said that if you or someone in your household are confirmed to have COVID-19 and your pet does become ill, you should talk with the public health official that is working with the ill person. That official can consult with a public health veterinarian who can assist your vet to evaluate your pet.
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