Friday, 27 March 2020

Measured reasoned voices amid coronavirus Covid-19 concerns

Among all the Covid-19 sensationalism and scaremongering and disease mongering, it is refreshing and heartening to identify people who are reasonable, sensible and have something worthwhile to share.

Dog in Hong Kong tests "weak positive" for Covid-19

Take the case of a dog in Hong Kong that tested "weak positive" for Covid-19, wherein local media and reporters attempted to create confusion and hysteria without knowing the science behind their headlines. Fortunately, there were a few calming voices that stood out (these are excerpts from this link).
Earlier in the day, Hong Kong veterinary surgeons called for calm after the “weak positive” case was announced. Dr Michael Bradley from Stanley Veterinary Centre said he thought it very unlikely that pets such as dogs and cats could be infected with the coronavirus, as very few viruses can jump between species.
“There is no need to panic. There is no evidence yet that the virus can infect dogs, cats or other domestic animals,” he said. “It’s possible that the dog had the virus due to environmental contamination. A dog can be an object that carries the virus the same way as anything else, like a tissue.”

“The dog tested weak positive from the nasal and mouth swab, not from a blood test. It’s quite possible that it is from the dog contacting the owner or being in the same environment with the owner,” Dr David Gething of Creature Comforts said.

Professor David Hui Shu-cheong, a respiratory medicine expert from Chinese University, also said that despite the pet’s weak positive result, it did not mean it had been infected. He added that no evidence thus far shows that dogs can be infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars), Middle East respiratory syndrome (Mers) or Covid-19.

Dr Florence Chan, secretary of the HKVA’s executive committee, said although what happened to the dog might appear to be a new development, it would be wrong to jump to conclusions.
“According to what we have on hand, the dog actually did not display any symptoms,” she said.

The World Health Organisation said there was no evidence that companion animals or pets such as dogs or cats could be infected with the novel coronavirus.


Coronavirus: quarantine recommended for pets of Hongkongers with Covid-19 as Pomeranian tests positive a second time (28 Feb 2020)


  1. Presumably you chose not to pixelate the dog's face on the grounds that it is an ex-dog. It has ceased to be.

  2. Thanks for your comment (and also your continued blog posts). It's a shame about the dog, although it did live to a good ripe old age.

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