Dog dies from coronavirus complications, North Carolina health officials say

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FILE – This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). Health officials hope to avoid stigma and error in naming the virus causing an international outbreak of respiratory illnesses. But some researchers say the current moniker, 2019 nCoV, which stands for 2019 novel coronavirus, probably won’t stick in the public’s mind. (CDC via AP, File)

RALEIGH, N.C. –  A dog in North Carolina died last week from coronavirus complications, according to a statement released by the the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

According to the statement, the dog was taken to a veterinary hospital with breathing problems. The dog’s owner informed staff a member of the family had previously tested positive for COVID-19 and since recovered.

Testing was then completed on the dog which confirmed it suffered from coronavirus.

According to the CDC, there’s no evidence pets play a significant role in the spreading of COVID-19.

“Based on the information available, the risk of animals spreading the virus to people is considered to be low,” said Dr. Carl Williams, State Public Health Veterinarian, in a statement.

The state plans to conduct additional testing in the dog owner’s home to see if pet-to-pet transmission occurred. Health officials say it’s highly unlikely.

“There is no indication at this time that dogs can transmit the virus to other animals, so there is no justification in taking measures against companion animals that may compromise their welfare,” said State Veterinarian Dr. Doug Meckes. 

The CDC website says if you suspect your pet might have COVID-19, you should first call a veterinarian to discuss next steps.

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