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Science And Nature

Your dog caught monkeypox. What does it mean for the pets along with other species?

Experts worry the condition could spread into animals, rendering it almost impossible to eliminate.

Published August 24, 2022

8 min read

A four-year-old Italian greyhound in Paris is apparently the initial domestic dog infected with the monkeypox virus. Researchers reported that the pet broke out in suspicious blisters 12 days following its owners developed pus-filled lesions. Studies confirmed that exactly the same strain of monkeypox infected among the two men and their dog.

The herpes virus, which transmits through physical contact, was declared an international health emergency in July. Cases currently number 44,503 across 96 countries and territories.

Given the closeness we tell our pets, this is not unexpected, says Colin Parrish, a professor of veterinary virology at Cornell University who studies newly emerging canine viruses. Its been a theoretical risk because we pet and kiss our dogs, cuddle them on our laps, and share food using them. They lick us and frequently sleep around, because the greyhound did along with his owners, Parrish notes.

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