New Guidance for Pet Owners During Pandemic

Owners should take same precautions with pets that they do with humans

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Alexandria, VA – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) are providing updated guidance for people who own pets..Until more is learned about how coronavirus affects animals, pets should be treated like human family members. This will protect them from possible infection. Because there is a small risk that people with the virus or COVID-19 could make animals sick, it is advised that owners limit their pets’ interaction with people outside their households.

The new guidelines include recommendations regarding dog walking and dog parks. Dogs should be walked on leashes, maintaining at least six feet from other people and animals. Pets and their owners should not gather in groups and should stay out of crowded places. It is worth noting that fenced dog parks in Alexandria remain closed.

Face coverings on animals may cause harm and should not be used. Do not wipe or bathe a pet with chemical disinfectants or products not approved for animal use. Talk to a veterinarian if a pet gets sick, or there are any concerns about a pet’s health.

View the CDC’s full guidelines HERE. View VDH’s full guidelines HERE.

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