Can dogs get coronavirus?

can dogs get coronavirus

With the images of dogs wearing face masks popping in our social streams, and countless WhatsApp threads giving wind to miracle cures of every kind – many pet owners were left wondering – can dogs get coronavirus?

In early March 2020, the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 novel coronavirus as a global pandemic. The ensuing panic over the spread of the virus saw people and policymakers resort to all sorts of measures —  sealing borders, hoarding toilet paper, flocking to the internet (and rumor mills mulling probable solutions), etc.

Many people in worst-hit towns of China abandoned their pets or were forced to do so as Covid-19 cases grew in numbers. Left to their own sans food to last for an extended run, many fear that they would be starving.

To make matters worse, counties in Hunan are terminating pets found in public places. Thankfully, there are volunteer networks and NGOs working to rescue the pets to safety.

Can dogs get coronavirus?

Media outlets and people have used “coronavirus” and “COVID-19″ interchangeably but it isn’t one and the same. Coronavirus isn’t something new but refers to a group of viruses that are known to cause respiratory issues ― like the common cold ― to more serious symptoms that can lead to hospitalization, like lung problems.

COVID-19 is a ‘novel coronavirus’ meaning it’s a new type of coronavirus that was not previously known or understood by health experts.

WHO can i get coronavirus from my dog
As per the WHO, your pets can’t transmit coronavirus. Dogs can contract certain types of coronaviruses, such as the canine respiratory coronavirus, but this specific novel coronavirus, aka COVID-19, is believed to not be a threat to dogs.

The World Health Organization has stated, “While there has been one instance of a dog being infected in Hong Kong, to date, there is no evidence that a dog, cat or any pet can transmit COVID-19. COVID-19 is mainly spread through droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks. To protect yourself, clean your hands frequently and thoroughly.”

The 17-year-old Pomeranian in Hong Kong had since tested negative after quarantine and the authorities believe the dog contracted “low-level infection” COVID-19 from its owner, but there is “no evidence” pets transmit the virus to humans.

How to Protect yourself against COVID-19

Follow basic hygienic precautions like:

  1. Wash your hands often with soap and water or a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  3. Keep social distancing.
  4. Stay home when you are sick or have a fever.
  5. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  6. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. Yes, that work table too.

Working from home? Here are some tips to groom your dog at home

Covid-19 pet care tips

There is no reason to change daily routines with pets while people remain healthy and symptom-free. Dogs are our friends through thick and thin, and we’ll see through the crisis together.

  • Look out for the exercise regimen of your dogs – if you are in a relatively safer area, take your dog out, practise social distancing during your walks. In case, you are in a high alert area, please try indoor activities to channel your pet’s energy.
  • Please keep your pets under your watch during the walks to enable social distancing when in public.
  • Try avoiding all non-critical vet trips. For all non-urgent health issues, please see if calls or online consultation may help.
  • Prepare for the worst – If in the god-forbidden scenario you get hold of the dreaded disease, what happens to your pet? Scary, right? Please make the necessary preparations – back up options – caretakers, extended family, food and exercise needs of your pet.
covid-19 pet care tips

Should my dog wear a mask?

Experts believe that dogs do not need a face mask to protect themselves against the novel coronavirus COVID-19. If you are still concerned or notice a change in your dog’s health, speak to a veterinarian.

How dogs are helping to detect COVID-19?

Researchers at the National Veterinary School of Alfort, outside Paris, trained eight Belgian Malinois shepherd dogs to identify people infected with the coronavirus. They used odour samples taken from the armpits of more than 360 people, who were both positive and negative for the virus.

The dogs had a 95% success rate in early trials.

The researchers said introducing dog detection was a cheap, quick and reliable “tool”.

Here are some movies, documentaries, and books that you can enjoy with your dog while you work from home.

So stay safe, wash your hands, and pet your dog. And don’t fall prey to rumors. Did I say Never and I mean EVER abandon your dog, cat or other pets because of coronavirus fear or for any other reason for that matter.

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5 Pune Animal Shelters and emergency helplines

Pune animal shelters - Mission possible pune
Mrs Padmini Stump runs Mission Possible, one of the Pune animal shelters working for the stray cause.

Here is a list of NGOs and animal shelters in Pune you may reach out to in case of emergencies involving animals. Please note, if the injury to the animal is grave and serious, kindly consider to arrange for the nearest vet. It may cost a little extra but you may just save an innocent life!

Please don’t buy dogs in Pune when you can adopt from one of these shelters!

Pune Animal shelters

1. Mission Possible Pet AdoptionsPadmini Stump and renowned cancer specialist Dr. Ravindra Kasbekar, founded what’s perhaps Pune’s most admired animal care center. The NGO leads rescue and adoption drives across Pune.

Address: 11 A Shankar Shet Road, Gurunanak Nagar
Pune – 411002
Phone: +91 99218 81894

2. RESQ Centre helps with the rescue and rehabilitation of animals in need. They have a clinic, shelter and run anti-Rabies drives.

Pune dog shelter
Image courtesy Resq Pune

Address: Plot No. 3906, Paud Mulshi Road,
Near 115 Hilltown, Near Chandni Chowk,
Pune – 411021
Phone: +91 9890999111
Open from: 11am – 5 pm | All Days

See Also: Pune man saves money for 10 years to buy an ambulance for stray dogs

3. SPCA Pune provides rescue, vaccination, sterilisation and medical facilities to ailing birds and animals. They also partner with colleges to offer internship opportunities to aspiring veterinarian doctors. In case you are looking for guidance wrt legal aid in the cases of animal violence or crimes, you can consult them.

Sign up for adoption updates

Address: 27/1, Hidayatulla Rd, Chitragupt Colony, Shanti Nagar Society, Katad Khana, Pune – 411042.
Phone: 020 2644 4960

4. Bodhisattva Pune helps in promoting animal safety and well-being. They also run an animal ambulance service so you can reach out to them at +91 9970404025 in case you spot a street dog who needs help.

Phone: +919970404025 

Aside from looking after the homeless or needy animals with food, and shelter, they also hold vaccination and adoption drives. They also raise funds towards providing animals with reflective collars to avoid fatal road accidents in the night.

5. Blue Cross Society of Pune is an NGO into animal rescue, adoptions along with a companion animal hospital in Mundhwa, Pune. They have an OPD, vaccination clinic, boarding and in-patient facilities. They also run Animal Birth Control (ABC) programs including animal sterilization and vaccination.

Address: Blue Cross Society of Pune, New Kubharwada, Keshav nagar, Mundhwa, Pune-411036 Phone: 9822066338, Email:

See Also: Animal Helpline in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Delhi NCR.

Know of any other Pune animal shelters, NGO or individuals doing great work for the stray cause? Please let us know in the comments below.

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Emergency Animal Helplines in Delhi NCR

Emergency Animal Helplines in Delhi NCR
Emergency animal helplines in Delhi NCR

Relentless cars, mean streets and a smog cover that is sadly becoming a city characteristic, Delhi has many woes for men and dogs alike. Almost every day somewhere in the capital or adjoining satellite cities, you may come across a helpless dog limping or needing medical attention, not to forget the abandoned pets.

A little help from you, a call, a ride to the nearest shelter may be the difference between life and death for the injured. Want to help but not sure how? Here’s a list of emergency animal helplines in Delhi NCR to rescue an animal in need.

Emergency Animal helplines in Delhi NCR

Here’s a list of dog NGO in Delhi -animals shelters and veterinary hospitals to help animals in need. You may also reach out to them for pet adoption or to seek medical care for stray animals.

1. Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Centre (SGACC) is Delhi’s largest animal shelter and facility for rescue, treatment and rehabilitation of stray dogs and injured animals. It runs an ambulance, clinic, and serves as a holding centre for animals of cruelty cases.

Address: Near Shivaji College &
Delhi Home Guards Head Office,
Raja Garden, New Delhi – 110027.
Phone: 011-25447751 / 25448062

2. Tis Hazari Veterinary Hospital is the first 24*7 government animal care hospital in Delhi. It is functional in three shifts – 8 am to 2 pm, 2 pm to 8 pm and 8 pm to 8 am.

Tis Hazari Delhi 24*7 animal hospital

Address: 10243, Library Rd, Railway Colony,
Tis Hazari, Delhi – 110006
Phone: +91 11 2396 7555

3. Jeevashram has a hospital and ambulance service, boarding facility, animal birth control and adoption services.

Address: Near Shiv Temple, Rajokri, New Delhi – 110038
Phone: 01124124114, 01124124118

See Also: Animal helpline numbers in Mumbai, Chennai, Pune, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Bangalore.

4. Pet Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) runs a low-cost sterilization and vaccination centre for pets and strays. They also organise pup adoption and anti-Rabies camps.

Address: C9/7, Masudpur Village, Badam Singh Market,
Vasant Kunj, New Delhi, Delhi – 110070.
Phone: +91 1800 11 5737

5. Animal India Trust has a clinic to assist with first aid, vaccination and immunization. They also have a street dog Animal birth control unit at Tughlaqabad Veterinary Hospital.

Address: Jal Vihar, Colony Gate No. 3,
Near Jal Vihar Bus Terminal,
Lajpat Nagar I, Delhi – 110024
Phone: 93138 84347, 98112 52592, 011-5566 9924

6. Sophie Memorial Animal Relief Trust cares for the old, disabled and special needs dogs.

Delhi animal shelter address

Address: SMART Sanctuary, B 141, Block D,
Omicron II, Greater Noida – 201310
Phone: 91 70427 23301

7. All creatures great and small is a sanctuary to help the animals. They have provisions for animal birth control, shelter and treatment.

Address: Village Silakhari, P.O. Dhauj
Tehsil & District Faridadad – 121004
Phone: +91 99103 08374

8. Earthlings Trust takes care of old and ailing animals. 

Address: Bandh Road, Village, Asgerpur,
Sector 127, Noida – 201303
Phone: +91 88004 69269

Animal helpline / Dog adoption in Gurgaon

9. Karma Animal Foundation looks after the homeless, abandoned, injured and disabled animals.

Address: Surya Farms, Next to Country inn by Carlson,
Bhondsi, Gurgaon – Sohna Road, Gurugram – 122001
Phone: 9811028965

10. Friendicoes SECA Gurgaon Animal Hospital & Sanctuary

Perhaps the oldest animal shelter in Delhi NCR, Friendicoes SECA cares for the homeless and injured animals. They also operate an ambulance service for animals in distress and an emergency clinic for pets.

Address: Garhi Harsaru, Gopalpur Khera sector 99, Gurugram, Tughlapur, Garhi Harsaru, Gurugram, Haryana 122505
Phone: 070277 77951

11. Umeed for Animals Foundation

Umeed for Animals Foundation is a charitable trust to help distressed, abused and neglected animals in Delhi-NCR. They run sterilization programs, adoption drives and also have a veterinary facility.

Address: Numberdar Farm Baliawas village, behind Pathways School, Haryana 122003
Phone: 099999 56541

12. Indigree Angels Trust helps to rescue and rehabilitate abused Indian/Pedigree dogs. They have a mobile clinic for treating minor wounds, deworming, broken limbs and maggots.

Their website seems to have been hacked. We will update the contact information as soon as we get confirmation. Meanwhile, you may reach out to them on FB Messenger: or Facebook.

13. Moti Bagh veterinary hospital, Delhi runs OPD services 8 AM to 8 PM every weekday (Sundays and Holidays – 9 AM- 12 PM)

Address: Shantipath Road, Near Safdarjung Railway Station, Moti Bagh, New Delhi, Delhi 110023

Please try to wait till the help arrives or if possible, drop the animal to the shelter. Kindly always ensure to follow up with the respective NGO/shelter on the dog’s condition and ensure that post-rehabilitation, they release the dog in the same area where he was rescued from.

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