MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Minnesota health officials say a Carver County cat has been confirmed to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19. It's the first confirmed case in a cat in the state.
On Tuesday, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health released the findings, saying the cat was confirmed to be infected with coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) seven days after its owner was confirmed to be infected with COVID-19.
The cat was brought into the vet with 105-degree temperature and symptoms consistent with upper respiratory illness. The cat was tested based on the symptoms and its owner's confirmed COVID-19 illness.
The animal health board says the cat was healthy five days after the initial clinic visit, but recommended the cat remain isolated for 14 days following the positive test result.
"At this time, there is no evidence that pets play a role in spreading COVID-19 to people or other animals," said State Veterinarian, Dr. Beth Thompson. "It's always important to isolate ill pets from healthy people and pets when possible, just as ill people should be isolated from healthy people and pets. If you suspect your pet is ill, contact your veterinarian."
According to animal health board representative Michael Crusan, it's assumed that the owner infected the cat, but further investigation would be needed to confirm that.
A dog at the household remains healthy at this time.
In April, the USDA announced cases of coronavirus infections in two household cats in New York.
Routine testing of animals is not recommended at this time.
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