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November 5, 2021 – The virus in one species has to mutate just right so that it can effectively invade the cells of a different species. “It appears that pets catch the virus from their owners rather than the other way around,” says Jessica Justman, a Columbia University epidemiologist. Dogs and cats are capable of getting sick from Covid, Justman says, mostly after close contact with infected people. If someone in your home has Covid-19, they should isolate from everyone, including pets,” says Justman. Additionally, there is evidence that COVID can infect pumas, gorillas and snow leopards in zoos, as well as ferrets and farm minks…“Certainly animals can spread infections to humans and when that happens, we call it a zoonotic infection,” says Justman. “While there is uncertainty about whether and which animals might have been the initial source of SARS-CoV-2, person-to-person spread continues to be the major route of spread.”

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