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    Air Pollution Dog Blog

    Toxins From Red Tides May Cause Long-term Health Threat to Pets

    Toxins From Red Tides May Cause Long-term Health Threat to Pets

    When harmful algae or other planktons growing in the sea blooms out of control, this phenomenon is commonly known as “red tide”. This affects sea life adversely, as a result of which a number of fish die on the shores. All the death and decay of sea creatures, including fish, emit various chemicals that may have an unpleasant odor.

    Besides the odor, the red tide common causal organism Karenia brevis itself emits a characteristic smell. It produces toxins known as brevetoxins, which is a neurogenic toxin. The substances emitted due to algal bloom can be transported through the air. Upon exposure to these toxins, one can experience respiratory irritation to the lungs and throat, a scratchy throat sensation, as well as difficulty breathing.

    Red Tide Fish Kill Bacteria Breathing Problems

    Red tides are common, and often persistent, naturally occurring events that release toxins into sea spray aerosols. These aerosols are a particular problem at beaches, as they can cause respiratory distress to lifeguards beachgoers, and pets. Although these shorter-term effects of the airborne toxin are well characterized, potential longer-term effects remain a concern to health officials and coastal communities.

    Large scale toxin buildup in the water causes mass sea life death as well as contaminated shellfish, that when consumed, cause severe gastrointestinal and neurologic symptoms. Those that inhale sea spray containing these toxins are at risk for DNA damage one study suggests. This year, Florida is experiencing one of the worst red tide outbreak in decades. At its peak, over 145 miles of coastline was observed to have an above average level of algae responsible for the “red tide”.

    Allergy specialists reported a 20% increase in patients above normal for the summer months. The effect can be exacerbated for those that are immunocompromised or especially susceptible to changes in air quality. A recent study of asthmatics showing an increase in symptoms associated with red tide as well as decreased lung function in as little as one hour of beach exposure.

    Veterinarians warn pet owners to keep their furry friends from coming in contact with red tide. “Dogs like to turn around and lick themselves and they can ingest that toxin,” said Dr. Sharon Powell, a veterinarian at Edison Park Animal Hospital. “If they ingest a sufficient amount it can cause different neurological problems.” Dr. Powell said some symptoms to watch for are shaking, dizziness, skin irritation, or trouble breathing.

    Red Tide toxins create harmful breathing for humans and pets.

    Factors such as wind speed, surf, relative humidity, and temperature all play a role in the transmission of these toxins from sea to land. The sea spray from the natural tides cause an aerosolization of the toxins which can then travel many miles onto land through air.

    The effect of red tide’s lingering smell can persist for as long as the bloom is present. Red tide events can last for as long as a year before levels of the algae return to normal. To combat the problem of odor and discomfort we can use air scrubbers as well as a hygiene assessment of the air conditioning system especially in those buildings located in and around the affected area. A negative air pressure machine in conjunction with a carbon-activated HEPA filter to “scrub” the air of containments. This remediation technique can help alleviate the smell, throat and lung irritation, and difficulty breathing with the toxins associated with red tide.

    The building filtration system requires additional scrutiny and periodical change in the air filter to keep the contaminants at bay. Building hygiene assessment is beneficial to evaluate indoor environments due to various pollutants produced by death and decay of sea life.

     

    Review: Air Filter Gas Masks for Dogs on Amazon

    Review: Air Filter Gas Masks for Dogs on Amazon

    Watch this video review of different air filter gas masks for dogs sold on Amazon.com.

    Amazon Review for Air Filter Gas Masks for Dogs

    This is a review of the TT Walk air filter mask (made in China) and the K9 Mask® dog air pollution filter (made in USA). Both of these air filters for dogs are available on Amazon.com.

    In the video review you will see the difference in the quality of materials, fit, adjustments, air filters, features, and benefits for each mask. There is a big difference in quality in these two air filter masks to effectively protect your pet from air pollution.

    TT Walk Dog Air Filter Mask:

    • Made in China
    • Made of Air Filter Material
    • Pm2.5 rated filter
    • Thin Elastic Neck Strap
    • No Muzzle Strap
    • No Illuminated Safety Features
    • Not washable
    • Disposable After Use

    K9 Mask® Pure Air X-1 Dog Air Filter Mask:

    • Made in USA
    • Made of Athletic Spacer Mesh
    • N95, Pm2.5, with Active Carbon rated filter
    • Comfort Fit Adjustable Neck Strap
    • Adjustable Muzzle Strap for Effective Air Filtering Fit
    • Illuminated Safety Reflective Panels
    • Washable for Freshness
    • Replaceable Air Filters Lasting Four Hours Each

    Watch the video and see for yourself which of these two air filter gas masks for dogs is right for your pet.

     

     

    Sad Dog CDC Information about Coronavirus Covid-19

    CDC Information about Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) and Pets

    Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some coronaviruses cause cold-like illnesses in people, while others cause illness in certain types of animals, such as cattle, camels, and bats. Some coronaviruses, such as canine and feline coronaviruses, infect only animals and do not infect humans.

    Dogs and Pets CDC Information about Coronavirus and Covid-19

    Key Points

    • Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some cause illness in people, and others cause illness in certain types of animals.
    • Some coronaviruses that infect animals can sometimes be spread to people, but this is rare.
    • We do not know the exact source of the current outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The first infections were thought to be linked to a live animal market, but the virus is now primarily spreading from person to person.
    • The first case of an animal testing positive for the virus in the United States was a tiger that had a respiratory illness at a zoo in New York City.
    • We do not have evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread the virus that causes COVID-19 to people or that they might be a source of infection in the United States.
    • CDC is aware of a very small number of pets outside the United States reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 after close contact with people with COVID-19.
    • Treat pets as you would other human family members – do not let pets interact with people or animals outside the household. If a person inside the household becomes sick, isolate that person from everyone else, including pets.
    • Further studies are needed to understand if and how different animals could be affected by the virus that causes COVID-19 as well as how this might affect human health.
    • This is a rapidly evolving situation and information will be updated as it becomes available.
    • For more information, see COVID-19 and Animals Frequently Asked Questions.

    Risk of animals spreading the virus that causes COVID-19 to people

    Some coronaviruses that infect animals can sometimes be spread to humans and then spread between people, but this is rare. Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) are examples of diseases caused by coronaviruses that originated in animals and spread to people. This is what is suspected to have happened with the virus that caused the current outbreak of COVID-19. However, we do not know the exact source of this virus. Public health officials and partners are working hard to identify the source of COVID-19. The first infections were linked to a live animal market, but the virus is now spreading from person to person. The coronavirus most similar to the virus causing COVID-19 is the one that causes SARS.

    The virus that causes COVID-19 spreads mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets from coughing, sneezing, and talking. Recent studies indicate that people who are infected but do not have symptoms likely also play a role in the spread of COVID-19. At this time, there is no evidence that pets can spread the virus that causes COVID-19 to people or that they might be a source of infection in the United States.

    Can Dogs be Infected with Coronavirus?

    Risk of people spreading the virus that causes COVID-19 to animals

    CDC is aware of a very small number of pets, including dogs and cats, outside the United States reportedexternal icon to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 after close contact with people with COVID-19. CDC has not received any reports of pets becoming sick with COVID-19 in the United States. To date, there is no evidence that pets can spread the virus to people.

    The first caseexternal icon of an animal testing positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 in the United States was a tiger with a respiratory illness at a zoo in New York City. Samples from this tiger were taken and tested after several lions and tigers at the zoo showed signs of respiratory illness. Public health officials believe these large cats became sick after being exposed to a zoo employee who was actively shedding virus. This investigation is ongoing.

    We are still learning about this virus, but we know that it is zoonotic, and it appears that it can spread from people to animals in some situations.

    CDC is working with human and animal health partners to monitor this situation and will continue to provide updates as information becomes available. Further studies are needed to understand if and how different animals could be affected by COVID-19.

    What to do if you own pets

    Until we learn more about how this virus affects animals, treat pets as you would other human family members to protect them from a potential infection.

    • Do not let pets interact with people or other animals outside the household.
    • Keep cats indoors when possible to prevent them from interacting with other animals or people.
    • Walk dogs on a leash, maintaining at least 6 feet (2 meters) from other people and animals.
    • Avoid dog parks or public places where a large number of people and dogs gather.

    There is a very small number of animals around the world reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 after having contact with a person with COVID-19. Talk to your veterinarian if your pet gets sick or if you have any concerns about your pet’s health.

    Protect pets if you are sick

    If you are sick with COVID-19 (either suspected or confirmed by a test), you should restrict contact with your pets and other animals, just like you would around other people. Although there have been no reports of pets becoming sick with COVID-19 in the United States, it is still recommended that people sick with COVID-19 limit contact with pets and other animals until more information is known about the virus. This can help ensure both you and your animals stay healthy.

    • When possible, have another member of your household care for your pets while you are sick.
    • Avoid contact with your pet including, petting, snuggling, being kissed or licked, and sharing food or bedding.
    • If you must care for your pet or be around animals while you are sick, wear a cloth face covering and wash your hands before and after you interact with them.

    If you are sick with COVID-19 and your pet becomes sick, do not take your pet to the veterinary clinic yourself. Call your veterinarian and let them know you have been sick with COVID-19. Some veterinarians may offer telemedicine consultations or other alternate plans for seeing sick pets. Your veterinarian can evaluate your pet and determine the next steps for your pet’s treatment and care.

    For more information visit: What to Do if You are Sick.

    Stay healthy around animals

    In the United States, there is no evidence to suggest that any animals, including pets, livestock, or wildlife, might be a source of COVID-19 infection at this time. However, because all animals can carry germs that can make people sick, it’s always a good idea to practice healthy habits around pets and other animals.

    • Wash your hands after handling animals, their food, waste, or supplies.
    • Practice good pet hygiene and clean up after pets properly.
    • Talk to your veterinarian if you have questions about your pet’s health.
    • Be aware that children 5 years of age and younger, people with weakened immune systems, and people 65 years of age and older are more likely to get sick from germs some animals can carry.

    For more information, visit CDC’s Healthy Pets, Healthy People website.

    Guidance and Recommendations

    Related Resources

    Information provided by CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/animals.html

    NY City Residents Adopting and Fostering All the Dogs

    NY City Residents Adopting and Fostering All the Dogs

    There is a shortage of dogs in New York. Of all the shortages created by the coronavirus pandemic, like toilet paper, hand sanitizer and bottled water—the oddest of them all has to be canines. New York City's animal shelters are experiencing an uptick in adoption and pet foster applications as millions of bored New Yorkers are stuck at home amid a government-ordered lockdown.

    Animal rescue groups Muddy Paws Rescue and Best Friends Animal Society told Bloomberg News that shelters they work with are almost out of cats and dogs after a surge in interest in the past two weeks.

    Demand for dogs right now is "totally unprecedented," said Sarah Brasky, the founder and executive director of Foster Dogs Inc., a New York-based nonprofit that connects animal rescue organizations with adopters and fosters.

    Foster Dogs has seen a more than 1,000% increase in foster applications this month in the New York area — the epicenter of the US outbreak — compared with the same month in 2019, Brasky said.

    Muddy Paws Rescue, a New York nonprofit, normally sees about 100 foster applications a month, but in just the past two weeks it's received close to 1,000, said Anna Lai, the organization's marketing director

    New York adopting fostering dogs during coronavirus Covid-19

    "Everybody who has ever wanted to foster or adopt is suddenly much more available," Brasky said.

    New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order last week urging residents to work from home unless they are considered essential workers. The statewide mandate is an effort to slow the spread of the virus.

    However, some rescue groups are worried the uptick in pet adoptions could lead to an increase in surrendered pets if people lose their jobs amid the crisis.

    New Yorkers adopting dogs in city

    “We’re doing whatever we can to empty all of our shelter facilities,” Lisa LaFontaine, chief executive officer of the Humane Rescue Alliance, told the news outlet. “We don’t know what’s going to happen when the economic wave starts hitting.”

    The interest in four-legged friends extends beyond New York. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) said its Los Angeles office saw a 70 percent increase in animals going into foster care, according to Bloomberg.

     

    Cat Infected with Coronavirus Reported in Belgium

    Cat Infected with Coronavirus Reported in Belgium

    The first known case of a cat testing positive for the coronavirus has been reported in Belgium. 

    A domestic cat in Belgium has been infected with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus that's spreading across the globe, the government's FPS Public Health, Food Chain Safety and Environment announced March 27, according to news reports. 

    The sick pet in Liège tested positive after showing classic symptoms of COVID-19 – including difficulty breathing – a week after its owner first fell sick, health officials told a press conference, the Brussels Times reports.

    Cat test positive coronavirus covid-19 in Belgium

    While it is the first known infection of a cat, two dogs in Hong Kong have previously tested positive – with the first, a 17-year-old Pomeranian, dying after returning home from quarantine.

    “The cat had diarrhea, kept vomiting and had breathing difficulties. The researchers found the virus in the cat’s feces,” professor Steven Van Gucht said Friday, according to the outlet.

    Reports of the passage of the coronavirus between humans, dogs and cats has been extremely rare. While two dogs were reported to have contracted the coronavirus in Hong Kong, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says no evidence has been found that pets can spread the virus.

    “At this time, there is no evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread COVID-19 or that they might be a source of infection in the United States,” according to the CDC. “CDC has not received any reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19. Further studies are needed to understand if and how different animals could be affected by COVID-19.”

    Other experts say the same thing.

    “There is no evidence at this time that dogs or cats can become ill due to the novel coronavirus,” said Gary Richter, a veterinarian on Rover’s Dog People Panel and author of The Ultimate Pet Health Guide. “There have been cases of dogs testing weak positive when they have been living with an infected person, but it is not suspected these animals can pass the virus to humans.”

    During the outbreak of another coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), dogs and cats contracted low levels of that virus, animal health expert Vanessa Barrs from City University told the South China Morning Post.

    There have been no reports of pets passing the virus to their human owners, and Van Gucht stressed that even human-to-pet transmission is not a significant path of viral spread. 

    "We think the cat is a side victim of the ongoing epidemic in humans and does not play a significant role in the propagation of the virus," he said. 

    To prove definitively that the cat was infected with SARS-CoV-2, scientists will need a blood test to look for antibodies specific to this virus, Van Gucht said. Those tests will happen once the cat is no longer under quarantine.

     

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