Can Dogs Contact and Transmit Ebola?

There’s a lot of controversy surrounding Spain’s move to euthanize the dog of nurse who contacted Ebola while serving in Africa. Can dogs actually get the deadly virus and transmit it to humans?

According to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Emerging Infectious Diseases published in 2005, it is possible.

“Given the frequency of contact between humans and domestic dogs, canine Ebola infection must be considered as a potential risk factor for human infection and virus spread,” the study noted. “Human infection could occur through licking, biting or grooming. “

The study, which was conducted in Gabon during an ebola outbreak in 2001-2002, reveals that 40 out of 159 dogs tested have detectable levels of ebola in their bloodstream. Moreover, 31.8 percent of the dogs that came from villages with ebola-infected human and dog populations have the virus.

The chart below strongly suggests that dogs can be infected with ebola and transmit the virus to humans. Continue to the next page to read more.

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