Coronavirus: Cat and dog owners are given updated government advice

  Posted: 27.03.20 at 16:33 by Kurt Robson

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The Government has today (Fri) issued advice for pet owners and livestock keepers about caring for their animals during the coronavirus pandemic.

There is no evidence of the virus circulating in pets or other animals in the UK and there is nothing to suggest animals may transmit the disease to humans.

However, in line with the general advice on fighting the spread of coronavirus, you should wash your hands regularly, including before and after contact with animals.


Dogs

If you have symptoms of coronavirus and must remain at home for 7 days or 14 days as a household.

· If your dog cannot exercise at home, you should ask someone outside the household to walk your dog

· All non-essential trips to the vets should be avoided, but if your pet needs urgent treatment then you must phone ahead to arrange the best way to meet your pets’ needs


If you do not have symptoms of coronavirus

· You can leave your house to exercise once a day and should combine this with walking your dog - but you must minimise the time spent outside your home and remain two metres away from anyone outside your household

· All non-essential trips to vets should be avoided, but if your pet needs urgent treatment, you may take them - after calling the vet beforehand - and must wash your hands and remain two metres away from anyone outside your household


Advice for anyone walking dogs on behalf of someone unable to
· You can leave your house to provide care or help a vulnerable person and this includes walking a dog for someone who is unable to leave their house because they are self-isolating or being shielded

· Wash your hands before and after handling the dog and keep two metres away from other people and animals, including when handing over the dog to the owner


Cats

· You should wash your hands before and after any contact with your cat


Horses, livestock and other animals

If you have symptoms of coronavirus and must remain at home for 7 days or 14 as a household
· If you have a horse in livery you must not visit them while you are self-isolating - contact the yard manager or vet to make welfare arrangements

· If you have livestock such as cattle, sheep, goats, pigs or poultry you should arrange for someone else to care for your animals

· Where it is not possible to hand over responsibility to someone else you should meet the basic needs of your animals. Wash your hands before and after handling your animals and remain two metres away from other people

· If you are too unwell to care for your animals and there is no one to help, you should call the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301 and choose the relevant options for Animal and Plant Health Agency

If you do not have symptoms of coronavirus

· You may leave your house to exercise once a day and you should combine this with caring for your horse or livestock

· Minimise the time spent outside of your home and remain two metres away from others. Wash your hands before and after contact with your animals


If your horse needs urgent attention from a farrier

· You should telephone the farrier to discuss the best way to meet your horses’ needs. If the farrier attends to your horse you must keep two metres apart from each other and wash your hands before and after contact with your horse.

Read the police guidelines on Coronavirus here.

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