Coronavirus patients’ pets in Hong Kong will be quarantined after dog tests positive for virus


Dogs wearing masks are seen in a stroller in Shanghai on February 19, 2020. (Photo by NOEL CELIS/AFP via Getty Images)

HONG KONG – A pet dog in Hong Kong tested positive for the coronoavirus, according to the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD).

AFCD made the announcement on Friday. They said the picked up the dog from a home at Tai Hang after the dog’s owner became infected with the COVID-19 virus.

The dog was sent to a facility, and oral, nasal, and rectal samples were collected for testing.

AFCD said the nasal and oral cavity samples were tested weak positive to COVID-19 virus. The dog does not have any relevant symptoms.

This is the only dog quarantined at the moment. There are no other animals using the facility.

AFCD released the following statement:

“At present, the AFCD does not have evidence that pet animals can be infected with COVID-19 virus or can be a source of infection to people. The Department will conduct close monitoring of the above dog and collect further samples for testing to confirm if the dog has really been infected with the virus or this is a result of environmental contamination of the dog’s mouth and nose. Repeated tests will be conducted for the dog and it will only be returned when the test result is negative.”

The spokesperson said that to ensure public and animal health, they are advising pets of patients be put under quarantine by the AFCD.

The pets will be delivered to designated animal-keeping facilities of the AFCD for quarantine and veterinary surveillance for 14 days. Samples will be collected for testing of COVID-19 virus as appropriate.

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