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COVID-19 | Texas Animal Health Commission Communications Touching Base

The TAHC Comm. Dept. continues to monitor the COVID-19 situation and update our animal health resources as information comes in. Since the tiger was confirmed with COVID-19 in N.Y., we have seen an uptick of interest in COVID-19 as it relates to animals. I would like to thank you all for your continued efforts in sharing factual and consistent messaging with the public and news outlets. Please continue to refer to our documents as you create animal health messaging and responses.
Attached, please find the updated FAQ and below find our key points as it refers to animals. The updated FAQ and additional information is available on our website.

Key Points:

  • Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some coronaviruses affect animals and some affect people. The majority of coronaviruses stick to their own species.
  • COVID-19 was first identified in the Wuhan province of China in late 2019 and early 2020. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and international health experts do not know the exact source of the current outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
  • The first case of an animal testing positive for the virus in the United States was a tiger that had a respiratory illness at a zoo in New York City. To learn more click here.
  • The CDC does not have evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread COVID-19 to people or that they might be a source of infection in the United States.
  • CDC is aware of a very small number of pets outside the United States reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 after close contact with people with COVID-19.
  • The CDC does not have evidence to suggest that imported animals or animal products pose a risk for spreading the 2019 novel coronavirus in the United States.
  • Further studies are needed to understand if and how different animals could be affected by COVID-19.
Thank you all for your efforts. If you all have any questions or concerns about our resources or communication efforts please let me know. I will do my best to answer them or point you in the right direction.
Thank you,
Callie Ward
Director of Communications