PETA Statement: Coronavirus and Companion Animals

For Immediate Release:
March 12, 2020

Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – Below, please find a statement from PETA Supervising Veterinarian Heather Rally in response to a public health professor’s hypothesis that companion animals can act as “intermediaries” for the coronavirus:

If an infected person pets a dog and leaves the coronavirus in the animal’s fur, that’s no different than if it’s left on a doorknob, a handrail, another human hand, or any other surface that an infected person has touched. PETA urges guardians to protect themselves and their animal companions by taking basic precautions: If you aren’t shaking someone’s hand, that person shouldn’t be petting your dog or cat, either.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. More information is available here, and I’d be happy to answer any questions that you might have.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind