What can we do to be protect our pets from COVID-19? As humans we are encouraged to protect ourselves with social distancing, masks and hand washing; this isn't possible for our beloved pets.
There is very limited information regarding COVID-19 and pets, but the risk of animals spreading the virus to humans is considered low by the CDC. (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/pets.html)
Help protect your pet and yourself by limiting contact with the public; avoid the usual butt scratches from the neighbor. When walking your dog keep a 6 foot distance from other dogs and people. If you're sick with COVID-19 avoid close contact with your pet and yes that includes cuddles and kisses; arrange for another family member to care for your pet if possible. If you have to handle your pet while infected with COVID-19 wear a mask and gloves and wash your hands frequently.
If your dog has been handled by a suspected infected person do not wash your dog with hand sanitizer, household disinfectants or alcohol. These products can be toxic and harm your pets skin and coat. Do bath them with dog safe shampoo (consult with your veterinarian for recommendations) with gloves and disinfect any collar or leashes.
If your dog is showing signs of illness do not put a mask on your dog; this isn't necessary and can cause harm to your pet especially if ingested. Do call ahead to your veterinarian and schedule a vet visit and wash your hands before and after touching or handling your pet. Isolate your pet from family members including humans and other pets.
K9 Role Models is open for business and has been following CDC guidelines. Masks will be worn inside and outside clients residents, and hand sanitizer is applied before and after consultations and classes. Classes will be held outside with a minimal 6 foot distance for instruction. If the leash has to be handed from trainer to client, or client to trainer hands should be disinfected or swapping out leashes will be recommended to prevent contamination and exposure.