According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is a small risk of people with COVID-19 spreading the virus to animals. Those who have tested positive or suspect they have the coronavirus should avoid contact with pets and other animals. If a person must care for their pet while sick, they should wear a face covering and wash their hands before and after interacting with them.
In the case of the German shepherd, the USDA said that the testing of the dog did not affect the number of tests available to humans.
“We are still learning about SARS-CoV-2 in animals, but there is currently no evidence that animals play a significant role in spreading the virus,” the release said. “Based on the limited information available, the risk of animals spreading the virus to people is considered to be low. There is no justification in taking measures against companion animals that may compromise their welfare.”
The German shepherd will join a lion, a tiger and two cats on the USDA's list of animals that have tested positive for the coronavirus in the U.S.
According to research, cats and ferrets are easily infected by the coronavirus and dogs had low susceptibility.