Cat and Golden Retriever snuggling together while laying on a kitchen floor

This Version Posted: June 8, 2020

Pets can support your happiness and well-being, especially in stressful times like COVID-19. If you are feeling well and not self-isolating due to COVID-19, walking your dog or spending time with your pet can keep you both healthy. Just remember to follow physical distancing rules when out in public by staying at least two-metres apart from others. 

Veterinary Care During COVID-19  

The Province is letting all veterinary services to resume on an appointment basis. It’s best to call your vet first to see what services are available before you visit. Do not see your vet if you are currently ill.  

Don’t have a vet and require care for your animal? Use the CVO’s Find a Veterinarian Search Tool.  

Other Animal Services

As of May 19, the Province is also allowing services for animals and pets to resume. This includes pet care services like grooming, pet sitting, and pet training services. You are encouraged to call your pet care provider first for specific information. Please be sure to take precautions by practising physical distancing and other preventive measures as well.

Effective May 16, 2020, businesses that board animals (e.g., stables) can allow allow boarders to visit, care for, or ride their animal.

Can Pets Get or Spread COVID-19?  

According to the World Organisation for Animal Healththere is no evidence that pets can spread COVID-19 in any way to people. However, there have been limited reports of animals becoming infected with COVID-19. 

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency recommends individuals with COVID-19 symptoms, or those self-isolating due to contact with a COVID-19 case, should take similar precautions around animals as they would around people. These steps include:  

  • Avoiding close contact with animals during your illness. Do not snuggle, kiss or let them lick you 
  • Practising good handwashing and avoiding coughing and sneezing on your animals 
  • Not visiting farms or coming in contact with livestock 
  • If possible, getting other members of your household to care for your animals. If this is not possible, be sure to: 
  • Always wash your hands before and after touching animals, their food and supplies 
  • Limit your animal’s contact with other people and animals outside your home until your illness clears up 

Additional Resources 

How to Care for Pets and Other Animals – Public Health Ontario  

Ontario Veterinary Medical Association 

Canadian Veterinary Medical Association