For the first time, the number of coronavirus infections in pet cats has been calculated, after 2,309 were examined by vets in the UK between April 2020 and February 2022.
When analyzing the test results, virologists and veterinarians from the University of Glasgow in Scotland concluded that 3.2 percent of the animals tested positive for Covid-19, which, according to the scientists, “is largely representative of the population of domestic cats,” The Independent reported.
The 2022 Cat Safety Report suggests there are around 11 million cats in the UK, which equates to 3.2 per cent of 352,000 cats infected with the coronavirus.
“We looked at more than 2,000 samples and found that more than 3% of the UK cat population has been exposed to Covid-19 and developed a neutral response, and this is increasing.” Study author Grace Tyson is a PhD student at the MRC-University of Glasgow Center for Virus Research.
According to the person responsible for the analysis, there may be more cases because his investigation only took into account certain antibodies. Tyson clarified that while our knowledge of feline pathology is not on par with what we know about humans, there are cases of severe flu and respiratory illnesses that these animals can catch.
The highest rate of infection was seen in late 2021 and early 2022, when one in 20 cats were infected.
Experts believe that cats can only infect humans and other animals for a few days and are therefore not responsible for the uncontrolled spread of the virus. Although the long-term impact of Covid-19 on cats and the potential risks of their infection to humans are not yet known, they are likely to be carriers of new strains.
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