Scientists have confirmed the transmission of coronavirus from person to cat. Infection also occurs by airborne droplets, according to a study by scientists at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, published in bioRxiv journal.
In the course of the study, scientists tried to find out whether a person can transmit a new type of coronavirus to animals – those with whom he often contacts. Ferrets, birds and bats took part in the work.
Two individuals from each species participated in the experiment – scientists tried to infect them with different SARS-CoV-2 strains. The analysis showed that the virus can enter the ferrets and be transmitted within the population, but it does not have as serious an effect on them as it does on humans.
Not a single strain of coronavirus could reproduce in the organisms of dogs, pigs, and birds — however, cats are exposed to it. For them, especially for young individuals, SARS-CoV-2 is fatal – in addition, it is transmitted from one animal to another by airborne droplets.
“Now scientists are actively developing vaccines for SARS-CoV-2, which raises an important question for us – which animals should be tested? Trying to answer it, we monitored how strongly different types of model laboratory animals, as well as pets, are susceptible to this infection”.
Hualan Chen, lead author of the study