A German shepherd dog in New York is believed to have been infected with SARS-CoV-2 by its owner, and though the dog is expected to recover fully, CDC spokeswoman Kate Grusich says the case highlights the need for pet owners with an infection to avoid contact with pets and other animals. Fewer than 20 pets worldwide have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, neither the AVMA nor the CDC recommends routine testing of pets, and the AVMA says pets do not need to be removed from households in which someone has COVID-19.
Because SARS-CoV-2 is zoonotic, there is reason to believe it could be transmissible between species, including from humans to pets, says veterinarian Jonathan Runstadler, a professor at Tufts University's School of Veterinary Medicine. Researchers at Tufts have been studying transmission of the virus and susceptibility in companion animals, pigs, horses, bats and exotic animals, Dr. Runstadler says.
Zoologists have long known some of the world's most virulent viral pathogens occur naturally in animal hosts that are able to withstand the infection, though many viruses are species-specific and cannot replicate in other species, write zoology professors Aliza le Roux and Bettine van Vuuren. Zoologists already have tools for identifying entire viromes in wildlife hosts, and zoologists should be working with virology and medical laboratories as well as social scientists and local communities to prevent the next pandemic, le Roux and van Vuuren write.
Annual injections of a Lyme disease antibody might be the most effective way to prevent the most common tick-borne disease in the US in the absence of a safe, effective vaccine, writes infectious diseases physician-scientist Mark Klempner, executive vice chancellor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School's MassBiologics. Lyme disease pre-exposure prophylaxis has shown promise in mouse and monkey studies, and human clinical testing is scheduled to be this year.
JAB, a holding company based in Luxembourg known for its portfolio of coffee companies, acquired both Compassion-First Pet Hospitals and National Veterinary Associates last year and is seeking more targets in the veterinary field. JAB's investing strategy in the coffee industry has been to acquire multiple competing businesses with a singular focus and take the package public, but some businesses have been left with high levels of debt.
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The AVMA's annual Economic Summit, scheduled for Oct. 27 and 28 in Chicago, will be held online instead and focus on how the COVID-19 pandemic will affect the health and future of the veterinary profession.
The AVMA has developed a series of maps that present different lenses to view the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on veterinary medicine and veterinary professionals. These interactive maps allow users to zoom in and out and hide or show specific data layers when more than one variable is shown. Practices can use the data to make informed and strategic decisions during the COVID-19 pandemic that best support the delivery of critical services to patients and clients, while keeping veterinary teams safe. Visit the AVMA website to learn more about and view AVMA's interactive maps.
We are the opening verse of the opening page of the chapter of endless possibilities.
Rudyard Kipling, writer, poet, journalist
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