“ ... Due to omnipresent human-animal interactions, this issue has to be taken into account during pandemic times, potentially with the use of the One Health approach, which is a transdisciplinary and multisectoral collaboration that aims to achieve optimal health outcomes by acknowledging the interconnectedness between people, animals, plants and their mutual environment.

Hence, as a part of an ongoing COVID-19 household transmission investigation, researchers from Utah and Wisconsin conducted a One Health appraisal of SARS-CoV-2 infection in pet cohabitants as one of the earliest research endeavors in assessing risk and behavioral factors shared between people and pets. ...

One Health in pandemic preparedness

Even though the risk of transmission can still be considered low, comprehending the exact epidemiologic role of animals in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is pivotal to inform guidance and decision-making for both public health officers and animal health officials.

“Our findings add to the growing body of evidence demonstrating SARS-CoV-2 transmission can occur between people and pets – most often from people to pets – and suggest this transmission may occur more frequently than previously recognized”, say study authors in this bioRxiv paper.

In any case, the findings in this study underscore the importance of additional research, which includes identifying specific risk factors for human-to-pet transmission, taking into account pets in public health guidance during the pandemic era, but also the inclusion of pets in future pandemic preparedness planning. ...”