Officials said on Monday, a dog in North Carolina who died after suffering from an “acute illness” earlier this month tested positive for coronavirus.
Death may mark a rare, potentially fatal case from COVID-19 in a pet, although it is not clear whether there are other underlying conditions leading to its death.
The dog was taken to NC State Veterinary Hospital in Raleigh on August 3 after showing signs of respiratory failure earlier that same day, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services said in a statement.
The person who brought the animal to the hospital told staff that a family member had previously tested positive for coronavirus, although the test was negative later, the department said.
For patient security reasons, the department did not provide further information about the dog or who brought it to the hospital.
A ministry spokesman said the dog died on the same day. Samples taken from dogs were examined in a diagnostic laboratory for a positive result, the results were confirmed by the US Department of Agriculture̵7;s National Veterinary Services Laboratory, the statement said.
Investigators are still trying to determine why it died.
Only a handful of animals in the United States have been infected, according to a list maintained by the Department of Agriculture. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most of these infections occur after contact with people infected with coronavirus.
The risk of animal transmission to humans remains low, the ministry said.
As of August 7, when the Department of Agriculture’s list was last updated, they have confirmed 13 cases in dogs in 8 states, including previous positive antibody tests in North Carolina. . Some cats have also been sick, according to the list. So did the eight lions and tigers at the Bronx Zoo.
Last month, National Geographic reported that the first dog to be positive in the US – a 7-year-old German shepherd dog from New York named Buddy – died on July 11, six weeks after he was born. confirmed sick.
The magazine reported that Buddy suffered from lymphoma when he died and it is not clear whether the cancer and the virus contributed to his death.
Most infected dogs have no symptoms or only have mild signs of infection, said Michael San Filippo, a spokesman for the American Veterinary Medical Association.
That “seems to indicate that this is not a big deal for dogs,” he said. “But we have a lot to learn, such as how it can combine with other conditions to cause more serious problems. We still advise you to be cautious about keeping your pet away. people who get sick and practice out of society with your pets and other pets and people outside of your household. “