FILE – A dog in Ontario has tested positive for COVID-19. (Pixabay)

FILE – A dog in Ontario has tested positive for COVID-19. (Pixabay)

Ontario dog believed to be first in Canada to test positive for COVID-19

Officials said that the risk of infection and illness in most domestic animals is low

A dog from the Niagara region in Ontario has tested positive for COVID-19, according to the agriculture, food and rural affairs ministry.

In a Friday (Oct. 23) advisory, the animal and welfare branch in the office of the chief veterinarian said they received notice of a dog infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

“The animal was tested as part of a research study, following diagnosis of COVID-19 in several people in the same household. This dog did not have any clinical signs of disease,” the ministry stated in its release.

Officials said that the risk of infection and illness in most domestic animals is low, but that current evidence suggests that mink, ferrets, cats and rarely dogs can get the virus. What this means for the animals is still uncertain.

The World Organization for Animal Health said that there is “no evidence that animal are playing a role in the spread of this predominantly human disease.” There have not been any confirmed cases of a pet transmitting the virus to another animal or to a human under regular conditions, as this infection took place as part of a study.

“Many of the naturally infected animals that have been reported in other countries did not show observable signs of illness,” the ministry said. “Clinical illness has been reported in mink and experimentally infected cats and is suspected in some naturally exposed cats.”

Overall, coronaviruses – which include COVID-19, SARS and some strains of the common cold – can cause respiratory or gastrointestinal issues in animals.

The ministry recommends that people who have COVID-19 symptoms or are self-isolating should limit contact with their pets, and make sure the pets are not in contact with other animals or people. Outside of studies, animals are not being tested for COVID-19 at this time.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

CoronavirusDogsPets

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dentice di Frasso, a member of Italian nobility, once owned land in Summerland. (Contributed)
Italian nobility family once lived in Summerland

Dentice di Frasso and his family owned land in the Prairie Valley area

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
47 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health region

1,538 total cases, 399 are active, ten in hospital

The Interior Wildfire Rehabilitation Society is looking for 10-15 acres to house a rehab centre for injured and orphaned wildlife like deer and moose calves. (Black Press file photo)
Okanagan group look for property to house wildlife rehab centre

The Interior Wildlife Rehabilitation Society is looking for 10 acres for injured/orphaned animals

Summerland residents have been receiving a telephone scam with the number showing as the telephone number of the local RCMP detachment. (Black Press Media files)
Summerland RCMP telephone number spoofed in scam calls

Number used in scam attempts from tax agency

Dusty Hill (left) and ZZ Top founder Billy F Gibbons on stage at the band’s first show in Penticton in 2009. The Tres Hombres will be back at the South Okanagan Events Centre May 2 with special guests Cheap Trick. (File photo)
Travel Penticton and SOEC to partner to promote Penticton

ZZ Top and Young Stars is not cancelled, just postponed

Mary Cox and Jack Plant dance in their pyjamas and slippers at the morning pyjama dance during the Rhythm Reelers’ 25 Annual Rally in the Valley Square Dance Festival in Chilliwack on June 4, 2011. Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 is Square Dancing Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Nov. 29 to Dec. 5

Square Dancing Day, Disability Day and International Ninja Day are all coming up this week

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

(Village of Lumby photo)
Mysterious, loud ‘boom’ shakes North Okanagan residents

Village staff, Earthquakes Canada aren’t sure what caused the explosion-like sound

Clarence Fulton students collect cash and non-perishable food donations for families in need in their community Friday, Nov. 27. (Jennifer Smith  - Morning Star)
North Okanagan students collect food for families in need

Annual event to support nine school families this year

Take a break from the slopes to discover the rich culture and diversity of Vernon. Michelle Beaudry photo, courtesy Tourism Vernon.
Tourism Vernon could see 40% cut to budget due to COVID-19

New approach to help residents and visitors activate their adventures

Follow public health recommendations, says Interior Health as COVID-19 cases continue to climb in Revelstoke. (Image courtesy CDC)
Revelstoke positive COVID cases grows to 29

Interior Health announced a cluster in the community on Nov. 26

Screenshot of Pastor James Butler giving a sermon at Free Grace Baptist Church in Chilliwack on Nov. 22, 2020. The church has decided to continue in-person services despite a public health order banning worship services that was issued on Nov. 19, 2020. (YouTube)
2 Lower Mainland churches continue in-person services despite public health orders

Pastors say faith groups are unfairly targeted and that charter rights protect their decisions

Leighton Allen Labute faces charges of animal abuse and allegedly has a string of social media accounts depicting disturbing content.
Accused Kelowna hamster killer has trial date set for 2021

Leighton Labute’s three day trial is scheduled for Aug. 16, 2021

(File)
Christmas break extended for UBCO students

Move made to support mental health of students, accommodate ‘overload’ of work

Most Read