Researchers say North Carolina family pugs may be the first coronavirus-positive dogs in the United States.
Three members of the McLean family-Sam McLean, wife Heather and their son, Ben-signed Covid-19 last month. The couple’s daughter, Sydney McLean, was the only family to show no symptoms.
When the family found their dog, Winston, Duke University Researches Covid-19 to Find Potential Treatments and Vaccines. As part of the study, family members use nasal swabs weekly to collect blood samples.
Chris Woods, the principal investigator of the study, also said he was collecting samples from family pets to see how the coronavirus spreads at home. Researchers have not used commercial tests that are in high demand worldwide to test animals.
They haven’t tested many pets, but the Winston sample is the only one that has returned positive. According to the university, he is believed to be the first virus-positive dog in the country.
“His (Winston’s) viral load we detected was very low, suggesting that he may not be the mechanism or vector that infects other animals or humans in these households with the virus.” Woods said.
Sam McLean, a researcher and emergency room doctor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said his wife, Heather McLean, said the family first fell ill. He was treating Covid-19 patients before getting sick.
Winston had some minor symptoms, although his family was ill.
“When we were all ill and peaked, he had a small cough for a day or two and didn’t eat breakfast one morning,” Ben McLean told CNN. “But we didn’t have a very disturbing illness like,” We have to take him to the vet. He’s really fed up. ” “
Woods said researchers couldn’t tell if the coronavirus made Winston ill or an unrelated illness.
McLeans has another dog and cat, but the test was negative.
Winston tends to lick and likes to spend more time around his family, Heather McLean said. Their cats are more lonely and their older pugs love to sleep most of the time.
“Winston is much more affectionate and we always hold them,” she told CNN. “Thus, if any of the animals tested positive for virus, it would be him.”
Federal authorities announced last week Two cats were positive for the new coronavirus in New York.
Eight lions and tigers tested positive for Covid-19 at the Bronx Zoo, but all large cats are doing well. According to the news release.
Two dogs isolated in Hong Kong were also virus positive. According to officials there.
Experts emphasized that There is no evidence Pets involved in coronavirus infection.
“For now, we don’t change our behavior with livestock. They’re an important part of our mental health now that we’re continually working to keep our distance to fight pandemics,” Woods said. Told.
“There is no evidence that pets can be transmitted at home from an epidemiological point of view,” said Anthony Fauci, the country’s largest infectious disease expert, at a press conference last week.
William Schaffner, a professor of preventive medicine and infectious diseases at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, said viruses rarely jump from animals to humans.
He said the first case of the Covid-19 pandemic Believed to have come from the Wuhan market in China, But it is spread all over the world through human contact.
“We don’t think this is common yet, and we’re convinced that it’s not the main route of transmission in either direction,” Schaffner said. “Giving it to pets is uncommon, and no one has proven that the virus has been obtained from pets.”
Schaffner said it’s a good idea for sick people and families who are socially separated from their pets. Center for Disease Control and Prevention Made similar recommendations.
Heather McLean said her family is not currently quarantined and is allowed to return to work. Her husband volunteered to work in a special Covid-19 unit in the emergency room, We think it’s a lower risk than our uninfected colleagues.
Heather McLean and Ben McLean want to be able to donate plasma to donate antibodies to patients.
“I am very grateful for the opportunity to participate in this survey,” she said. “I’m really looking forward to donating plasma to help other patients.”
Winston is on track too, she said. He has taken many walks and enjoys following the families around the house and watching what they are doing.
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