March 19, 2020

Can Animals Get COVID-19?

Can Animals Get COVID-19?

Many have worried if COVID-19 can hit animals.

Indiana State Veterinarian Bret Marsh says that has not been confirmed.

"At this point we have no evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread or become ill by this coronavirus," Marsh says.

The Indiana State Board of Animal Health has been in contact with agribusinesses around the state, but Marsh says there is no immediate concern about the state’s livestock population.

"The coronavirus is a family of viruses that’s been around a long time, and they can be present in animals, but this is a unique one, so we continue to watch," says Marsh.

In the past, Indiana has implemented agribusiness restrictions to help stop the spread of a virus. The avian influenza epidemic swept through poultry farms in 2015, and the state put restrictions on bird commerce.

Health precautions, like hand washing and social distancing, are helpful in stopping the spread of any virus, says Marsh.

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