Wash your hands EVERY time you touch your pet cat or dog and don’t ever kiss them to prevent coronavirus, vet warns – The Sun

A VET warned pet owners should be washing their hands before and after touching animals during the coronavirus outbreak.

The Sydney vet encouraged people to treat their pets like a member of family, but with added vigilance.

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Dr Anne Fawcett from the University of Sydney's School of Veterinary Science called on pet owners to practice good hygiene when looking after their four-legged friends.

The University of Adelaide is undertaking two research projects to determine whether pets can experience a biological transmission of the virus after several dogs and cats outside of Australia tested positive for Covid-19.

Dr Fawcett told Daily Mail Australia: "You should wash your hands before and after touching any animal.

"We're not asking pet owners to do anything different, except to be vigilant.

"My advice is to use common sense and remain calm. We need to remember that there are very few reports of the virus involving animals."

Dr Fawcett said it was safe to take a dog out for a walk in public, as long as social distancing rules are maintained.


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She recommended against patting other people's pets on the head, unless hands can be washed first and afterwards.

Kissing your pet or burying your face in its fur is also not recommended.

"We've all been told to isolate in a family bubble," said Dr Fawcett. "My advice would be to consider your pets as part of that family bubble."

If a pet owner or family member tests positive for Covid-19, Dr Fawcett recommends getting someone else to look after the pet to isolate yourself from the animal just as you would from other members of the family.

Vets remain open in the UK as they are an essential service, but they are changing the way operate in order to comply with social distancing measures.

The British Veterinary Association (BVA) advice that vets must reduce in-person contact to help with the UK's fight against coronavirus.

This means they must only open for emergency care to pets and fulfil urgent prescriptions.

Anybody looking for an appointment for their pet should contact their local practice.

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