Your pet cannot infect you with Covid-19. That is the reassurance from the National Council of SPCAs, which had to allay fears this week sparked by a controversial poster circulated by the Spar supermarket group.
The poster intended to warn the public about the potential danger that exposure and contact with, “stray animals – cats, dogs, rodents, birds, and bats”, carried.
Instead, it has angered animal rights activists.
In a statement circulated by the association this week, it said: “It has come to the attention of the NSPCA that certain entities are spreading misinformation regarding animals and the Covid-19 virus. The NSPCA would like to assure the public there is no evidence that Covid-19 can be transmitted from domestic animals to humans.
“It is unclear whether or not this virus is transmittable from wild animals to humans. Therefore, we continue to strongly discourage interactions with wild animals – not only for ethical reasons but now for health reasons too.
“It has come to light that misinformation relating to the Covid-19 virus is being circulated implying that domestic animals are the source of transmission – this is simply not true”.
Meg Wilson, the spokesperson for the NSPCA, said that the World Health Organisation (WHO) also confirmed there was no evidence indicating dogs, cats or any pets transmitted Covid-19.
Instead, the virus was spread mainly through droplets produced when an infected person coughed, sneezed, or spoke.
Wilson said they raised awareness through information shared on various media platforms and encouraged people to consider information from reliable sources working with Covid-19.
Neeri Naidoo, the co-founder of the Phoenix Animal Care and Treatment (Pact), said she had also received numerous calls from pet owners who were afraid that they might be infected with the coronavirus while caring for pets.
She said the owners wanted to hand over their pets but Pact was unable to accommodate them because her organization did not have a housing facility.
The Spar group apologized for its coronavirus comments with a Facebook post this week.
It read: “Dear Spar customers and all animal lovers, The Spar Group would like to unreservedly apologize for the incorrect posters that have been displayed in some of our stores.
“In an effort to protect our customers and in the wake of the panic following the first Covid-19 announcement, we acted too hastily by adopting and translating communication from other countries dealing with the pandemic. They were factually incorrect.
“Animals have ‘no connection’ with the spreading of the Covid-19 virus.
“We have instructed all stores to immediately remove the misleading posters and replace them with the correct communication. Our most sincere apologies to all that have been affected.
“We will endeavour to make amends in whatever way we can to mitigate the damage we have caused,” the post read.
In other news – Lethabo Molotsi enjoying her vacay in the Maldives – Pictures
What an epic way to spend a national lockdown away on a vacay in South Asia, in the Maldives. One thing for sure here is that with how beautiful and amazing this place looks, she will never experience the 21 days boredom many of us here back home are already facing as she will be having a fun time on the island.
Source: Sunday Tribune