- Jim Reed
- health affairs reporter
People with monkeypox should avoid contact with their pets for 21 days, according to advice from the UK’s Health Security Agency.
So far, 106 cases have been confirmed worldwide.
Gerbils, hamsters, and other rodents may be more susceptible to the disease, but they may spread it to other animals.
The government sources said that they “did not detect any injuries among pets, and the risk is small.”
“Our concern is that the virus can pass to pets and start spreading between them in every direction, and if we are not careful, we can create a colony of disease viruses that can spread to humans later,” said Professor Lawrence Young, an expert in virology at the University of Warwick.
According to the instructions issued by the British health authorities, rodents such as the guinea pig, rat and mice must be kept away from any homes where people have monkeypox for a period of 21 days, and examined to ensure that they are not infected.
An estimated two million homes have pets in the UK, according to sales data.
According to health recommendations, the infected person should not prepare meals for pets if someone else in the house can do this task.
“No cases of monkeypox have been detected in pets in the UK and the risk remains low, and we will continue to monitor the situation closely and cooperate with relevant authorities around the world to control the risk of monkeypox spreading,” England’s Chief Veterinarian Christine Middlemes said. .
‘Isolation is a last resort’
According to advice published by the European Center for Disease Control this week, “Rodents owned by people infected with monkeypox are preferably isolated in controlled gatherings and should be examined to ensure they are not infected after the end of the isolation period.”
The document stated that this procedure is used as a last resort if no other means is available.
Larger pets such as dogs can be isolated at home, with frequent health checks.
Scientists say there is little information available about the potential impact of monkeypox on domestic animals, but rodents and some types of squirrels can become infected and transmit it more easily than others.
Experts say that transmission of the disease from humans to animals may contribute to the rapid spread of the disease in the wilds of Europe, but this possibility is very small.
A potential danger of concern is the permanent establishment and transmission of the disease among animals.
“Proud twitter enthusiast. Introvert. Hardcore alcohol junkie. Lifelong food specialist. Internet guru.”