Pet cat becomes first animal in UK to get coronavirus after catching it off owners

Pet cat becomes first animal in UK to get coronavirus after catching it off owners

A PET CAT has become the first animal in the UK to officially be diagnosed with Covid-19.

It's understood that the cat caught the disease from its owners, who live in England.

They noticed something was wrong after realising the feline was suffering respiratory problems, and was frequently short of breath.

The cat was confirmed to have the virus after being tested at the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) laboratory in Weybridge last Wednesday.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman confirmed the news: "The test was carried out by the Animal and Plant Health Agency laboratory having been referred by a private vet who the owners had taken the cat to see.

"Its symptoms were a respiratory infection with a nasal discharge and some shortness of breath."

Both the cat and its owners have since fully recovered from the virus, with all involved fortunately only showing mild symptoms.

Health officials insisted that there was no evidence that the cat transmitted the disease to its owners.

"There is no evidence to suggest that pets directly transmit the virus to humans. We will continue to monitor this situation closely and will update our guidance to pet owners should the situation change," admitted Chief Veterinary Officer Christine Middlemiss of Public Health England.

Experts have warned people to avoid cuddling their pets if they have the virus. They also advise keeping cats indoors so there is zero risk they can spread germs around a neighbourhood.

It isn't the first time an animal has been diagnosed with Covid-19 since the outbreak.

The first dog in the world to catch coronavirus died after it was declared disease-free and returned home to its owner in Hong Kong.

The 17-year-old Pomeranian, whose owner caught Covid-19, had been quarantined at a government facility but returned home over the weekend.