Cats and dogs with a fever can get tested for COVID-19 in South-Korea

Cat and dog on the couch at home
Cat and dog at home, photo by Tran Mau Tri Tam on Unsplash

Pet cats and dogs with a fever, cough or breathing difficulties will be offered coronavirus tests, the Seoul government said Monday.

The program in the South Korean capital comes weeks after the country reported its first case of COVID-19 infection in an animal, a kitten.

“Starting today, the Seoul metropolitan government will offer coronavirus tests for pet dogs and cats,” Park Yoo-mi, a Seoul city official handling disease control, told reporters.

Tests will be limited to pets that show symptoms like fever, coughing, breathing difficulties and runny noses, and if the animal came into contact with humans who have tested positive, Yoo-mi added.

The test will be done near the animal’s home by a team of health workers and a veterinarian. Animals that test positive need to isolated at home for 14 days, but if owners also have the virus their pets will be sent to separate kennels or catteries.

Around the world tigers, gorillas, dogs and cats have tested positive for the coronavirus. Last month, gorillas at California’s San Diego Zoo tested positive for the virus.

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