The BCCDC and the BC Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries are interested and seeking cats to study the transmission of the COVID-19 virus to domestic animals, particularly household cats.
Recent evidence of natural infections suggest that some animals can be infected and indirectly transmit the COVID-19 virus.
This study will look at the risks of COVID-19 virus transmission from humans to cats and will help fill important information gaps on companion animals and COVID-19.
Cat owners will need to participate in 2 short surveys (15 minutes each) over the phone prior to sample collection and ability to place cat(s) in a carrier outside at the front door at two separate sampling times.
Those who participate will be asked to partake in a pre-sampling survey over the phone before each scheduled sample collection date. The medical team will collect blood sample (3 ml), nasal/oral swab, and rectal swab.
If the cat tests positive, sampling will continue every week until a negative test result is found.
This is a contact-less study, and cats will be asked to place the cats in a carrier outside the front door for the sample collection team.
A cat carrier is not needed and the BCCDC team will provide a sanitized carrier. A mobile station will be set up outside the home to test them and bring them back.
BCCDC can sample up to three cats from one household.
“Safe and humane manual restraint methods will be used to minimize stress to the cat and maintain safety for both the cat and the sampling team. The sampling team is comprised of experienced animal care professionals who will use fear-free handling techniques,” BCCDC says.
If you have questions about the study please email the project coordinator: email@example.com