A Cedar Rapids family’s pet boxer has become the first non-human case of COVID-19 in Iowa.
Steve Shriver said their 3 1/2-year-old dog, Eden, is recuperating as of Feb. 4, 2021, after being treated with antibiotics.
“She is almost fully recovered,” Shriver said, noting that his family has already recovered from COVID-19. “The dog still has a little cough similar to kennel cough.”
Shriver, a Cedar Rapids entrepreneur, said the family’s pet cat is doing fine so far.
“The cat doesn’t get as close to us,” he quipped.
On Feb. 4, Iowa surpassed 5,000 confirmed deaths from COVID-19, with 5,033 deaths as of 10 a.m. The state has had 322,513 confirmed COVID-19 cases so far.
Cedar Rapids Animal Hospital noted that the dog is the first confirmed non-human case of COVID-19 in Iowa and the 21st non-human case worldwide.
Veterinarians there noted that based on limited information available to date, the risk of animals spreading COVID-19 to people is considered to be very low.
“It appears that the virus that causes COVID-19 can spread from people to animals in some situations,” a statement from the practice noted. “It is recommended that if a person inside the household is suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19, that person should isolate from everyone else in the home, including pets.”
Common symptoms of COVID-19 in pets are:
Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
Discharge from nose or eyes
“At this time we feel it is still safe for your pets to go places like the Dog Park, doggy daycare or boarding facilities if all member of your household do not have symptoms of COVID-19,” the statement noted. “If you or any other member of your household are suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19, it would be our recommendation that you do not take your pets to these places until you are considered to no longer be contagious.”
Related: Update on COVID-19 vaccines in Iowa