June 14, 2024

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Can animals infected with COVID-19 transmit virus to humans?

Can animals infected with COVID-19 transmit virus to humans?


Can animals infected with COVID-19 transmit virus to humans?  Please treat animals under COVID-19 epidemic based on science and rationality.


How to assess the animal’s COVID-19 risk? The origin of the COVID-19 should be from wild animals, probably the biggest possibility is bats.

But to this day, the largest host of the COVID-19 in the world is humans, not any other animal. So we are now assessing the animal’s risk of COVID-19s, the most basic starting point is whether this animal will be infected by humans .


Many animals do. The following table is the World Organization for Animal Health  summarized the global animal infection situation as of October 31st. It can be seen that many animals have been tested positive for the COVID-19, including common pets such as cats and dogs.


Can animals infected with COVID-19 transmit virus to humans?


But when an animal is infected, it is the animal that suffers first, and it will not necessarily turn the muzzle and then affect people. Therefore, you should not see that the animal is infected, or that the animal is infected, immediately shout and scream.


People can infect the COVID-19 to animals, but it does not mean that animals can again infect the COVID-19 to people. Because this involves whether the new coronavirus can effectively multiply in animals.

Even if it can, it also involves the degree of close contact between infected animals and people.


So far, according to a large number of studies, the risk of animals transmitting the COVID-19 to humans is extremely low .

The only exception is the mink farm in Northern Europe last year. But that is a very special case. Why? Because of the high density of mink in the mink farm, the spread of infection is very serious.

At the same time, because it is a breeding farm, all breeders have become people who have been in close contact with sick mink for a long time, which greatly increases the possibility of re-injecting the virus into people.


If a large number of COVID-19 infections occur in a certain animal, we need to worry about whether new mutations will occur and the unknown risk of these mutant strains being transmitted to humans .

The minks in the farms happen to meet these two requirements. In this case, out of cautious consideration, some Nordic countries have made the decision to culling the farmed minks.

This decision is not without controversy. Even if the COVID-19 mutation was observed in the mink, there were cases of workers contracting the mutant virus from the mink, but the specific harm, especially whether there is a risk of further spreading like the general population, is lack of evidence. .


Looking at other animals that have tested positive for the COVID-19, the actual impact on people can basically be ruled out. Animal infections such as tigers, jaguars, and gorillas occur in zoos.

These animals do not have the so-called high-density clustering phenomenon, and they are unlikely to have mutations-mutations are based on a large number of infections and the continuous replication of viruses.

Let alone a few tigers in a zoo, you can count the tigers all over the world. If you are infected, you may not be able to make a mutation.


Only the white-tailed deer in North America has the largest scale of infection among wild animals.

Recent studies in the United States have shown that deer herds in some areas have a large number of positive cases for COVID-19 antibodies.

The virus isolated from deer shows that the infected virus strain is highly consistent with the epidemic virus strain in the local population. From these results, it seems that it is also deer.

Human infection. It is necessary to further observe and track whether the virus will mutate in the deer herd or be transmitted back to humans.

It should be noted that even if there is such a risk, reducing human contact with wild deer can effectively control the risk.


The only animals that ordinary people come into contact with are pet dogs or pet cats. Many people see that once these animals are infected, wouldn’t it be too dangerous to humans?

This is a misunderstanding. Both pet cats and pet dogs are now infected by their owners. Taking into account the situation of pets, whose cats and dogs gather in crowds outside every day?

Worrying about the infection of these infected cats and dogs to other people, it is better to worry about whether the owners of these cats and dogs will pass it on to others.


There is no case pointing to pets passing the COVID-19 to human . So to worry about the spread of the virus in cats and dogs is to worry about the wrong direction.

Even if you don’t rest assured, since the infection of cats and dogs comes from the owners, you can isolate the infected person and keep the pets isolated at the same time .

The virus has a life cycle in these pets, and it will go from infection to recovery, and there is no long-term carry. Euthanasia is completely unnecessary and does not conform to scientific understanding.


You can say that we need to be cautious about epidemic prevention, but the most cautious approach must be based on basic scientific facts .

Caution should not be used as an excuse to ignore science.

Many epidemic prevention measures themselves are inconvenient to the people involved, and the treatment should be based on science and should not cause greater harm beyond the inconvenience.

After all, epidemic prevention is to reduce damage rather than increase damage.






Reference materials:


Can animals infected with COVID-19 transmit virus to humans?

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