Dog Catches Monkeypox

Diego Tolossa, Staff Writer

Were you aware that monkeypox can be transmitted to animals? It is true! A dog in France caught monkeypox from its owner, raising the possibility that other animals could also get infected. It’s the first case of its kind, and health administrators say to stay away from pets if you are infected.

 Monkeypox was first discovered in monkeys in the late 1950s and has since then spread to humans. Monkeypox cases for humans first happened outside of Africa in 1970. Since then it has spread around the world. Most recently as of August 19, 2022 Monkeypox was discovered in a dog for the first time in history. 

Monkeypox can be spread through close skin-to-skin contact.  It also spreads when someone touches fabrics that have been used by someone with the virus – such as clothing, bedding, towels, etc.  A doctor named Sylvie Briand added, “it means that dogs can be infected, but it doesn’t mean that the dog can transmit the disease and infect other dogs, nor does it mean that an infected dog can re-infect humans”. 

However, if monkeypox becomes established in the animal population the virus would have more opportunities to mutate.  If that is the case, it could put monkeypox at a higher transmission and severity rate. It is still unsure if animals could potentially give the virus to people, which would increase the risk of future outbreaks.

Even with the uncertainty that the monkeypox virus can not be transmitted from dogs to humans, there is a current outbreak among humans.  This is not a curable disease but luckily there are medications that can help the symptoms. If you have any symptoms of monkeypox it’s best to seek medical assistance in order to help stop the spread of this virus.