Pet insurer: Records show no sign of human coronavirus in pets

dvm360dvm360 March 2020
Volume 51
Issue 3

Increasing concerns among pet owners about whether pets can contract the SARS-Cov-2 virus prompted Trupanion to mine its data and share good news.

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Pet insurance company Trupanion has announced that there have been no unusual increases or changes in the frequency of illnesses in its pet health database over the past 45 days. This reassuring news comes after reports that a pet dog in Hong Kong tested ‘weak positive’ for the human COVID-19 coronavirus, heightening the concerns of pet owners worldwide.

"We want to provide [our members] and other loving pet owners with some peace of mind,” says Steve Weinrauch, BVMS, MRCVS, Trupanion’s chief veterinary officer in a press release.

The Seattle-based company—which announced last week that it has paid out over $1 billion in veterinary invoices since it was founded more than 20 years ago—regularly reviews the pet health data it collects to monitor for changes in illness patterns.

“We monitor our data on a very granular level; daily, weekly and monthly and by breed, country, city and even at neighborhood level to make sure we understand and are on top of any health-related trends that might be out of the norm,” says Trupanion’s vice president of analytics, Mary Rothlisberger.

Trupanion will continue to monitor its data for any early indicators of COVID-19 and promises to keep the public informed with the latest news. “If things do change, we’ll be letting members, pet owners and veterinarians know immediately,” Dr. Weinrauch says.

There are no confirmed companion animal cases of the SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus strain in the U.S., nor is there evidence to suggest that pets can contract or spread the disease.

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