Monkeypox victims told to avoid animals after pet dog is infected

The World Health Organisation appealed to those infected with monkeypox to avoid exposing animals to the disease after the first reported case of a human-to-dog transmission emerged.

The British-based medical journal, the Lancet, last week reported an Italian greyhound, living with two men in Paris, had caught monkeypox.

Rosamund Lewis, the WHO’s technical lead for monkeypox made it known that this is the first case of human-to-animal transmission and said they believe it is the first time a dog had been infected.

“Experts had been aware of the theoretical risk that such a jump could happen. Public health agencies have already been advising those who caught the disease to isolate themselves from their pets.”

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Lewis added that it was also crucial that animal owners were extra hygienic where animal waste is concerned so that it does not contaminate rummaging, rats, cats, and other animals outside the household.

As we have seen with the Covid-19 epidemic, viruses can jump from one species to another, develop, and mutate.

The WHO’s emergency director, Michael Ryan, said the main concern revolves around animals outside the household.

“The more dangerous situation is where a virus can move into a small mammal population with a high density of animals.

“It is through the process of one animal infecting the next and the next and the next that you see rapid evolution of the virus.

“I don’t expect the virus to evolve any more quickly in one single dog than in one single human but people need to remain vigilant and pets are not a risk.”

Monkeypox was originally identified in monkeys kept for research in Denmark in 1958, though it is found most frequently in rodents.

The disease was first discovered in humans in 1970, with the spread since then mainly limited to certain west and central African countries. But in May this year, cases of the disease began spreading rapidly around the world, mainly among gay men.

The WHO has recorded more than 35,000 cases since the start of the year in 92 countries, and 12 people have died.

There is a vaccine, originally developed for smallpox, but it is in short supply.

SOURCE: The Guardian

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Bob Scott

Bob Scott is an experienced writer and editor with a passion for travel. Born and raised in Newcastle, England, he spent more than 10 years in Asia. He worked as a sports writer in the north of England and London before relocating to Asia. Now he resides in Bangkok, Thailand, where he is the Editor-in-Chief for The Thaiger English News. With a vast amount of experience from living and writing abroad, Bob Scott is an expert on all things related to Asian culture and lifestyle.

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