Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

SARS-CoV-2 infection in domestic and feral cats: current evidence and implications.

Abstract

Current evidence indicates that cats play a limited role in COVID-19 epidemiology, and pets are probably dead-end hosts of SARS-CoV-2 and pose negligible risks of transmission to humans. Still, one health concept is to be adopted widely as a component of mitigation strategies to tackle the ongoing pandemic. Therefore, in terms of the magnitude of infection and potential to transmit SARS-CoV-2 to humans, our surveillance efforts should mainly focus on mustelids (especially minks, ferrets, and others) for early detection and control of infection. This will ensure that SARS-CoV-2 will not get established in the wild animal population of these susceptible species. We agree with Dr. Passarella Teixeira on the possibility of domestic and feral cats acting as an urban reservoir, subsequently transmitting the virus to human beings. However, it is less likely that such a phenomenon will be reported even if it has occurred due to the efficient and extensive human-to-human transmission of SARS-CoV-2.