STORRS, CT – A 3-month-old Connecticut puppy who passed away unexpectedly tested positive for the virus, which was due to a cause of the coronavirus, according to university researchers.
The announcement came on Tuesday and the finding marks the first pet in the state to test positive for the coronavirus, researchers said.
The puppy was taken to the University of Connecticut Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for post-mortem evaluation. Last year, the organization partnered with other laboratories in the United States to conduct surveillance tests on all dogs and cats brought into the laboratory, regardless of the suspected cause of death. So far, the laboratory has tested around 200 samples. UConn officials said.
The virus can be transmitted from humans to animals under certain circumstances. Monitoring and research will continue to determine which animals are susceptible to infection and the risk of animals transmitting the virus to humans, which is considered to be minor based on current understanding of the virus.
The CVMDL is one of 38 laboratories across the country that are members of the National Animal Health Laboratory Network (NAHLN) and serve as part of a national surveillance program for SARS-CoV-2 in animals, said CVMDL director and PVS professor Salvatore Frasca.
The dog had no signs compatible with COVID-19 before death. As part of the ongoing monitoring of the CVMDL for SARS-CoV-2, it was tested and, according to the study, would be the first positive SARS-CoV-2 result reported by the CVMDL.