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Research confirms that pets can be infected by owners

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Research confirms that pets can be infected by owners

JN / Agencies

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A cat infected with the coronavirus and whose owner suffers from covid-19 is healthy and asymptomatic, reveals a study by researchers, released in Spain, in what may be the first case detected in Europe.

The discovery, announced this Saturday, took place during a pilot project conducted by the head of the Department of Infectious Diseases at the San Pedro de Logroño University Hospital and the La Rioja Biomedical Research Center (CIBIR), José António Oteo, according to the agency EFE .

The survey was carried out between April 8 and May 4 with 23 pets of people with coronavirus disease in La Rioja, a province in northern Spain.

"The infection was found in the sample taken in the mouth of one of the cats, asymptomatic and that remains perfect, healthy," the investigator told EFE.

For José António Oteo, this result confirms that "pets can be infected by sick people and, as such, there is a need to protect them".

"No one has shown that pet animals can be a source of infection for humans," he explained, arguing for the need for "more research" in this area.

"They (domestic animals) probably do not have enough viral load to infect us, but the information must be generated when a new emerging infection appears," as with covid-19, he said.

Considered one of the world's leading specialists in diseases transmitted by ticks, José António Oteo expressed his concern about the possibility that mink (or mink) could transmit the disease to human beings.

The investigator was referring to the case detected this week in the Netherlands. Experts from that country put the hypothesis that the worker on a mink breeding farm (mink) was infected by that species.

For Oteo, when a new disease appears, "it is necessary to generate knowledge". The researcher warned that not many conclusions can be drawn from the research now carried out, but argued that "cats can get sick".

"We can infect our pets", calling on owners to "be careful and when they are sick do not expose animals to their secretions".

"Protect pets, take care of them and follow hygiene rules, as with people," he insisted.

The pilot project involved twelve dogs, eight cats, two rabbits, a guinea pig and their respective owners.

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