National Pet Parents Day

Apr 25, 2020

Definitely not a housepet - but a cat, nonetheless!
Credit Dmitry Teslya [Flickr]

A tiger is definitely not a house pet, but it shares many traits with its small domestic cousin, the house cat.  Unfortunately one thing they share is susceptibility to COVID-19.  But while they might catch it from humans, there is no evidence that a human can catch it from an infected cat.  

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There are multiple online calendars of holidays and events for or about pets – and the month of April has an abundance of them. For example, this is National Pet First Aid Awareness Month. It is also Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month.

Last week was National Dog Bite Prevention Week. Earlier this month we had National Hug Your Dog Day followed by National Pet Day. And tomorrow is National Pet Parents Day, always the last Sunday in April.

So, as a pet owner, how would you celebrate Pet Parents Day? If your furry buddy likes to ride in the car, a spin around the block or through the neighborhood might be a special treat. Speaking of treats, tomorrow might be the day to give your four-legged friend an extra treat or two. Or take a few selfies with your pet and share a really good one on social media. While you're shooting, get the whole family together – human and animal – and get a group shot – or several. One might just find its way into next year’s Christmas card.

Unfortunately, not all the pet news is good. Recently at the Bronx Zoo, eight big cats (five tigers and three lions) tested positive for COVID-19. It is believed they were exposed to it by a zookeeper who had coronavirus but showed no symptoms at first.

Then this week came reports that two pet cats in New York State also tested positive for COVID-19. The housecats live in different parts of the state and are expected to recover. Officials think one cat caught the virus from its owner (who had tested positive). They suspect the other cat caught it from a neighbor.

Authorities say that it seems these pets got the virus from people, but there is no indication that it can be transmitted from animals to humans.

There is no reason to be afraid of your pet, especially when it comes to COVID-19. But – there is every reason to protect your pet from coming in contact with people and other animals outside of your household. This year, being a good “Pet Parent” might mean keeping your best friend safely at home, with you, when you’re speaking of pets.

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