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Zoonotic transmission of Covid-19

Published in the Beacon 29-Sep-21

The views expressed here are solely my own and do not express the views or opinions of any organization with which I am associated.

A feline perspective on the COVID-19 pandemic

My name is Pippa Luca, and as you can see from the ribbon, I am Argentine. Naturally, I support the Puma rugby team. Do you know that a Puma is just a big cat and that it is native to Argentina?

I live with my family Cristina, Stefano and Agostina Luca on the 7th floor apartment of a 14 story high-rise in the city of Buenos Aires not far from where the President lives. He is a dick, by the way. Although I have good views of this city of 16 million, I am a house cat and never go outside or interact with anyone other than my family. Today, the 22-Sep-21, my family took me to the vet because I had a sore throat and was gagging a bit. The vet dude diagnosed me with a sore throat. I could have told him that. He also told us that the previous week he had seen two dogs with COVID-19.

This is the story of how I got to have a sore throat and probably the flu or COVID-19.

On Saturday the 28-Aug-21, after more than 18 months of lock-down, my family decided to visit some relatives. My family left me behind as usual. Too bad, I got the house all to myself.

My family have all had a double shot of the COVID-19 vaccine. Again, I got left behind. Cristina got the Oxford-Astrazeneca and Agostina and Stefano go the Sinopharm. My family apparently spent a pleasant evening with the relatives, who have twin children. There was another family present at the gather and they were all crammed into a small house. None of them had symptoms of anything. No one wore masks during the evening. Nice one guys! I did warn them about this sort of thing but as usual nobody ever listens to me.

One week after the gathering, on the 2nd of September, Cristina became ill with a sore throat, runny nose and fever. Then Agostina got sick and then so did Stefano. After about five days, Victor, a guy the kids call Dad and whom I have never seen, insisted they get tested for this new disease called by the strange name of COVID-19. It is on TV a lot. All three were given the rapid antigen test which came back negative within 15 minutes. Only Cristina was given the full kahuna test known as RT-PCR. It came back saying ‘nothing detected’. So according to the tests none of my family had COVID-19. But they sure as hell were crook with something.

Since I don’t go out or interact with other people, I could only have got my sore throat/flu from them. Thanks guys!

As it turns out, it is now clear that cats can get the flu from humans and can also give it back to them. The same appears to be true for COVID-19. So when folk go out and do stupid stuff like go to social gatherings without masks, they should spare a thought for the likes of me.

All readers should be aware that none of the available COVID-19 tests are 100% accurate and therefore it is still possible that we all got COVID-19. We will never know for sure because, of course, nobody bothered to test me because I am just an animal. Thank God my family had been vaccinated.

Some smart researchers at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS, USA recently proved that us cats can transmit COVID-19 without even showing symptoms.

The important message here is that nobody thinks about me and the harm I can do to them and them to me. There are a lot of us domestic cats and dogs around.

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