Prof. Scott Weese, the head of infection control at U of G’s Ontario Veterinary College (OVC), spoke to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about changing government advice on whether pets pose a risk for spreading the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recently updated its coronavirus guidelines to state that animals and pets should be considered household members and thus kept away from other humans and animals. The change in policy came after several animals in the U.S. were shown to have contracted the virus.
Weese said that while knowledge about the virus is evolving, seeing the CDC change its advice is “concerning” as the shift affects their credibility with the public.
The article also noted that Weese and his team at U of G have begun a study to try to understand what risk COVID-19 poses to pets, including why some animals living with infected humans become ill while others do not.
Weese is a veterinary internal medicine specialist with the Department of Pathobiology at OVC. He researches many types of animal infection, including rabies and tick-borne diseases as well as antimicrobial resistance.