Can Cats Get COVID?

Silver Tabby Cat Lying on Brown Wooden Surface

Can Cats Get COVID? Yes, cats can get COVID-19, but cases are rare and typically involve mild symptoms.

The virus that causes COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, can infect cats, but they are not a significant source of transmission to humans.

How Do Cats Get COVID?

Cats can contract COVID-19 through close contact with infected humans.

The virus is primarily spread through respiratory droplets, so if an infected person coughs, sneezes, or breathes near a cat, the cat can inhale these droplets and become infected.

Transmission Between Cats and Humans

While cats can get COVID-19 from humans, there is currently no evidence to suggest that cats can transmit the virus back to humans.

The primary mode of transmission for COVID-19 remains human-to-human.

Symptoms of COVID-19 in Cats

The symptoms of COVID-19 in cats are generally mild and can include:

  • Coughing: A persistent cough can indicate respiratory involvement.
  • Sneezing: Frequent sneezing can be a sign of upper respiratory infection.
  • Runny Nose: Nasal discharge may occur in infected cats.
  • Fever: An elevated body temperature might be present.
  • Lethargy: Cats may show signs of fatigue and reduced activity.
  • Loss of Appetite: A decrease in eating or drinking can occur.

Most cats recover fully without needing significant medical intervention.

When to See a Veterinarian

If your cat shows any of these symptoms and has been in contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19, it is important to consult a veterinarian for advice and potential testing.

Preventing COVID-19 in Cats

To protect your cat from COVID-19, follow these preventive measures:

  • Limit Contact: If you or someone in your household has COVID-19, avoid close contact with your cat as much as possible.
  • Good Hygiene: Practice good hygiene by washing your hands before and after handling your cat.
  • Isolation: If you are infected, isolate yourself from your pets just as you would from other household members.
  • Vet Visits: Schedule regular veterinary check-ups to monitor your cat’s health and discuss any concerns with your veterinarian.

Research and Findings

Person Holding White Black and Brown Cat

Recent studies have shown that while cats can get infected with SARS-CoV-2, they typically experience mild or asymptomatic cases.

Research is ongoing to better understand the implications of COVID-19 in cats and other pets.

For more detailed information on COVID-19 and its impact on pets, refer to the Wikipedia page on COVID-19 and animals.

Caring for a Cat with COVID-19

If your cat tests positive for COVID-19, follow these steps to ensure proper care:

  • Isolate Your Cat: Keep your infected cat away from other pets and household members.
  • Follow Vet’s Advice: Adhere to any treatment or care guidelines provided by your veterinarian.
  • Monitor Symptoms: Keep an eye on your cat’s health and report any worsening symptoms to your vet immediately.
  • Maintain Hygiene: Continue practicing good hygiene and disinfecting common areas.


Cats can get COVID-19, but infections are rare and typically mild.

While cats can contract the virus from humans, there is no evidence that they can transmit it back to humans.

Practicing good hygiene and limiting contact if you are sick can help protect your cat from infection.