The coronavirus has been the focal point of global conversation for weeks and has recently forced American businesses and restaurants to close their doors at the recommendation (and in some places, the orders) of state and local governments. As Orlando residents retreat to the comfort of their homes to self-quarantine and limit the spread of the highly contagious virus, hysteria can set in as they begin to worry about potential threats of exposure.
To provide answers and clarity in uncertain times, here is some information regarding the origin of COVID-19, the possibility of its transmission between pets, wildlife, and humans, and what you should do if a wild animal wanders on your property during your self-imposed quarantine.
What Exactly Is the Coronavirus?
The novel coronavirus is a respiratory disease caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, which was first detected in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, in late 2019. The disease, named “coronavirus disease 2019” (COVID-19), has since spread to more than 150 locations internationally, including the U.S.
Did COVID-19 Originate With Bats?
According to the CDC, the outbreak of COVID-19 can be traced back to large seafood and live animal market in Wuhan, China, that included bats. While the animal-to-person spread is rare, coronaviruses — such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) — have been known to originate in animals species including:
Testing by infectious disease experts at the CDC has determined that, just as with MERS and SARS, COVID-19 originated in bats.
Can Wild Animals Spread Coronavirus to Humans or Pets?
The World Health Organization (WHO) has concluded that, at this time, no reports have been made and no evidence shows that domestic pets or wildlife are in danger of catching or infecting others with COVID-19. Additionally, IDEXX Reference Laboratories recently evaluated thousands of feline and canine specimens and announced that none of their subjects tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.
What Diseases Can Wild Animals Spread?
While wild animals are not known to carry COVID-19, they can spread other infectious diseases to you or your pets, such as:
How Do Wild Animals Get in My Home?
Wild animals can often squeeze through small cracks and holes in exterior walls, windows, doors, and foundations. However, invasive wildlife most commonly enters residential homes by accessing roofs and entering attics by penetrating through:
- Ventilation ducts
- Loose shingles
How Can I Get Rid of Nuisance Wildlife?
Wild animals can become aggressive and dangerous if cornered or startled. Therefore, it is recommended that the handling of unwanted pests be left to professionals who have the correct training and tools to properly handle safe and effective removal.
Protecting Your Home From Outside Dangers
If you notice, hear, or are alerted to the presence of wild animals at your residence while waiting out the coronavirus at home, contact the pest removal experts at Critter Control® of Orlando. We will safely and efficiently inspect, remove, and exclude any nuisance animal that is intruding on your social distancing. We will also sanitize and restore the damage left behind by an unwanted wild animal infestation.