The World Health Organization (WHO) called Wednesday for people infected with monkeypox to avoid exposing animals to the virus following a first reported case of human-to-dog transmission.
The first case of human-to-dog transmission of monkeypox between two men and their Italian greyhound living together in Paris was reported last week in the medical journal The Lancet.
“This is the first case reported of human-to-animal transmission… and we believe it is the first instance of a canine being infected,” Rosamund Lewis, the WHO’s technical lead for monkeypox, told reporters.
Experts had been aware of the theoretical risk that such a jump could happen, she said, adding that public health agencies had already been advising those suffering from the disease to “isolate from their pets”.
She also said “waste management is critical” to lower the risk of contaminating rodents and other animals outside the household.