It has been confirmed that the monkeypox virus was found in a pet dog, and likely spread from humans to pets. This has been noted in a new report in The Lancet.
Until now, health experts did not know if pets can catch this virus. Even though it has been found in wild animals, there have been no documented cases of human-to-animal transmission in pets.
Until now, the theory is that any mammal can catch and spread the virus to other mammals. As June approached, the CDC warned people with monkeypox not to come into contact with their pets.
Two men in France got monkeypox and made sure to isolate their dog from other pets and humans once their symptoms started. However, the dog kept sleeping in their bed. Two weeks later, the 4-year-old greyhound tested positive for monkeypox and had bumps characteristic of monkeypox.
The DNA analysis of samples from the dog and one of its owners revealed a 100% sequence homology, indicating they were almost certainly linked. Each sample contained the hMPXV-1 clade, lineage B.1, which is the strain causing illness in the U.S. and Europe. In Paris, where the owners live, the strain has infected more than 1,700 people.
As far as we know, the kinetics of symptom onset in both the patient and the dog suggest human-to-dog transmission of monkeypox virus, write the authors of the case report.
Given the dog’s skin and mucosal lesions, as well as monkeypox virus PCR results from anal and oral swabs, it is likely that the dog was not simply carrying the virus from humans or from airborne transmission.
Hence, because monkeypox in pets should be treated as a serious disease, the authors emphasized the importance of isolating animals when humans become infected.
“A CDC recommendation states that infected people should not care for pets that are exposed.” “The person with monkeypox should avoid close contact with the exposed animal, and ask someone else in the household to care for the animal until they are fully recovered.”
Before and after caring for pets if owners must isolate at home, they should wash their hands and sanitize their hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, recommends the CDC. Monkeypox sufferers should also cover their skin rashes and lesions with long sleeves, long pants, gloves, and wear a mask while caring for their pets. As such, owners should not put a mask on their pets.
The owners who become infected should also make sure that their pets don’t come into contact with contaminated items in the home, such as clothing, sheets, and towels that have been used by the infected person. Also, food, toys, and pet bedding must not have exposed rashes or lesions.
The CDC advised pet owners not to surrender, euthanize, or abandon their pets because of the risk of exposure. Moreover, owners shouldn’t wash or wipe their pets with chemical disinfectants, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or other products, like hand sanitizer or counter-cleaning wipes.
Although scientists don’t know all the symptoms of monkeypox infection in pets, owners should watch for signs of illness such as a lack of energy or appetite, coughing, a runny or crusty nose, bloating, fever, bumps, and blister-like skin rashes. Owners can have their animal tested if it gets symptoms and has had close contact with someone who has a probable or confirmed monkeypox case.
More than 31,700 monkeypox cases have been reported in 89 countries, including 31,400 cases in 82 countries that don’t typically report the disease, according to the latest CDC data. More than 11,000 cases have been reported in the U.S., followed by more than 5,000 in Spain and nearly 3,000 in both Germany and the U.K.
CDC data indicates the number of cases in New York is the highest, with over 2,200, according to the latest reports. There are at least 2,000 cases in California, more than 1,000 in Florida, more than 800 in Georgia and Texas.