Animals In The Time Of Cholera vs Covid-19

Cholera is an infection by strains of the bacterium [Vibrio cholerae] in the small intestine. The classic symptom is large amounts of watery diarrhea that lasts a few days, while vomiting and muscle cramps may also occur. It affects an estimated 3–5 million people worldwide and causes 28,800–130,000 deaths a year.

Although it was classified as a pandemic in 2010, it is rare in the developed world.

Our current pandemic [COVID-19] is more prolific and pernicious. It's an infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome. The disease was first identified in 2019 in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei, China, and has since spread globally, resulting in the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

But how do each of these pandemics affect animals and is there any transference to humans?

Do animals get cholera?

Cholera goes back 3,000 years when it spread throughout India. The disease also spread into China and southern Russia in 1817. Since then, there have been multiple pandemic level outbreaks, including the 1991 El Tor strain in Peru.

However, most animals do not become infected from cholera. Dogs may become infected if exposed to a very large number of the Vibrio cholerae bacteria in either food or water. Outbreaks have been reported in bison, cattle and dogs.

Cholera has evolved to infect humans, not mammals like hippos. It's a disease caused by a curved rod-shaped bacterium called Vibrio cholerae. The disease is characterized by profuse diarrhea that resembles "rice water", and can lead to death within hours.

Unlike many other diseases, it can't be passed to us from animals, as malaria is from mosquitoes.

Do Animals get COVID-19?

Awhile back I wrote about our pets not susceptible to Covid-19. Nor can they be a carrier and give it to humans. According to most scientists [not all], the odds are against our pets [dogs or cats] catching the coronavirus.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, person-to-person and community spread has been reported in numerous countries, including the United States.

Infectious disease experts and multiple international and domestic human and animal health organizations agree there is no evidence at this point to indicate that pets will become ill with COVID-19, or that they will spread it to other animals or humans.

If you have contracted COVID-19, you can still interact with your pet as you normally would, including walking, feeding, and playing. However, you should still maintain good hygiene during those interactions [e.g., wash hands before and after interacting with your pet; ensure your pet is kept well-groomed; regularly clean your pet’s food and water bowls, bedding material, and toys.]

Differences between Cholera & COVID-19

If cholera arrived in an epidemic or pandemic form, we are now knowledgable as to what to say about it. In the case of coronavirus, we don’t really know what to do about it. There's just not enough medical information. There is no cure or vaccine, and it will take at least a year or more for that to happen.

COVID-19 travels faster than cholera, and fundamentally it arrives in 2020 where there are greater population hubs like New York City and Los Angeles. Coupled with our technology of getting the word out online and through social networks, it's important to be aware of misinformation and distrusted sources.

For instance, if anyone was to tell you that your pets can contract and transfer COVID-19, you would now know not to trust that information. It's not being transferred by some spikey scaled pangolin or fury flying bat. These infectious diseases are contracted by populations of warm-blood primates. The true animals source of COVID-19 is us.  


Primary Source: American Veterinary Medical Association