When can pets receive the COVID vaccine?


If your dog is under the weather, it is probably another insect or disease that is affecting pets.

Cavan Images / Getty Images

For the latest news and information on the coronavirus pandemic, visit WHO and CDC websites.

They’re man’s best friend (or a good acquaintance, if you’re talking about a cat), and they might stick like glue to your side as you recover from the worst disease, including COVID. -19. But research throughout the pandemic has shown that pets and other animals can catch the coronavirus – according to the US Department of Agriculture more than 15 species of animals, including pets and wildlife, have contracted COVID-19. So your dog or cat will be able to get a Covid vaccine?

Don’t hold your breath. Simply put, pets are unlikely to get seriously ill from the coronavirus and also do not transmit COVID-19 to humans. According to United States Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the risk of animals transmitting COVID-19 to humans is low. And pets don’t live in zoos either, where many animals received experimental vaccine against COVID-19 from veterinary pharmaceutical company Zoetis, either out of caution about their endangered status or because they may encounter hundreds of “oohing” and “aahing” humans every day. The virus is also more likely to some sick animals than others.

“A vaccine is pretty unlikely, I think, for dogs and cats,” Dr. Will Sander, assistant professor in the Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, told The New York Times. mid-november report. “The risk of spreading disease and illness in pets is so low that no vaccine would be worth giving.”

And the minks?

At the end of 2020, the Danish government ordered millions of mink are killed following revelations that animals were catching COVID-19 from mink farmers and transmitting it to humans. The phenomenon of spread of mink to humans of COVID-19 has been reported in Denmark, the Netherlands, Poland and possibly the United States, according to the CDC. According to US Fur Commission, there are over 275 mink farms in 23 states of the United States. On these farms, animals are raised and killed for their skin and other body parts, for use in clothing, cosmetics, and other materials.

In response, manufacturers of animal vaccines began to work on vaccines for mink, The New York Times reported, especially Zoetis. The pharmaceutical company, which had started work on a vaccine for dogs and cats in 2020, said in January that it focused on mink and that “it is not uncommon to adapt vaccines for experimental purposes in other species”. In July, Zoetis said it was donating more than 11,000 doses of its experimental COVID-19 vaccine to zoos, conservatories and sanctuaries in 27 states.

the USDA currently only accepts applications for animal vaccines against COVID-19 for mink; other animals (such as zoo animals) may only be vaccinated on a case-by-case basis, with the approval of the USDA and state veterinarians. Wisconsin Public Radio reported in July 2021 that the state’s Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection approved Zoetis’ vaccine for mink in May. Wisconsin produces the most mink skins in the United States.


Mink farms raise and kill animals for their fur and other by-products. There have been outbreaks of COVID-19 in mink farms.

Konstantin Sokolov / Getty Images

So how can I protect my pet from COVID-19?

Animals infected with COVID-19 are rare. The FDA reports that a “very small number“of pets around the world have tested positive for COVID-19. Even smaller numbers will actually get sick with COVID-19.

If a dog or cat becomes ill, they may exhibit human symptoms of COVID-19, including fever, cough, difficulty breathing, sneezing, runny nose, diarrhea, and vomiting, by the CDC. Because the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 spreads to pets on close contact, avoid kissing, cuddling, snuggling, or sleeping in the same bed as your pet if you are sick with it. COVID-19, says the CDC. If someone in your home tests positive for COVID-19, try to keep the person isolated from everyone, including pets, if possible.

Although your pet cannot be vaccinated against COVID-19, keep track of your own vaccinations (including a booster dose) helps protect everyone in your household, including pets.

How? ‘Or’ What not to protect your pet from COVID-19

Don’t put a mask on your dog or cat, says the CDC. Also, do not wipe or bathe your pet with chemical disinfectants, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or other products, including hand sanitizer and other cleansers. There is currently no evidence to suggest that the virus that causes COVID-19 can spread from a pet’s fur.


Do not put a mask on your dog.

Carol Yepes / Getty Images

Can I test my pet for COVID-19?

If you suspect your pet has COVID-19, or is sick for any reason, call your vet (but if you have COVID-19 yourself, do not go see a vet in person). According to the CDC, pet testing may be recommended for pets if the animal has been in direct contact with someone with COVID-19. However, vets are “encouraged to consider other causes of illness more common in animals and should use their clinical judgment in deciding whether to test animals for SARS-CoV-2,” according to the agency. Which means that, given the low frequency of animals showing symptoms of COVID-19, another insect or disease could be causing your pet to feel a bit under the weather.

If your vet decides to test your pet, it will be with a buccal, oropharyngeal (throat) and / or rectal swab, according to the CDC.

The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended for health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have about a health problem or health goals.


Comments are closed.