Second dog in Hong Kong tests positive for coronavirus

In a photo from March 6, 2020, a man wearing a protective face mask sits next to his dogs in Hong Kong. PHOTO: REUTERS

HONG KONG (BLOOMBERG) - A second pet dog in Hong Kong has repeatedly tested positive for the Covid-19 virus after its owner was confirmed as being infected, the government said.

The german shepherd living in the Pok Fu Lam area on Hong Kong Island was sent for quarantine along with another mixed-breed dog from the same residence, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department said in a statement.

"No positive results were obtained from the mixed-breed dog and neither dog has shown any signs of disease," it said. "The department will continue to closely monitor both dogs and conduct repeated tests on the animals."

The department reminded pet owners to use good hygiene practices, including washing hands before and after being around or handling animals, their food and supplies, and to avoid kissing them.

Mammalian pets should be put under quarantine in department facilities if a person in their household becomes infected, it said, adding that there is no evidence that pet animals can be a source of Covid-19 for humans or that the virus can cause the disease in dogs.

The case comes after a 17-year-old pomeranian tested weak positive during repeated tests for the virus, according to the statement.

That dog died two days after it was released from quarantine.

The department said the cause of death couldn't be determined after the owner, who recently recovered from a coronavirus infection, declined to conduct an autopsy.

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