THE Cork County Chief Veterinary Officer has urged people to be alert to changes in the behaviour of their dogs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mr Edmond O’Sullivan said that with the current restrictions in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19, dogs are experiencing increased interaction with adults, teens and young children at home.
“This, combined with a curtailment of their normal exercise routine, can lead to confused behavioural cues and signals for the dog and can be dangerous in terms of canine innate dominance and territorial aggressive behaviour. Children in particular can provoke unpredictable reactions in dogs.” the Cork County Chief Veterinary Officer said.
Mr O’Sullivan said dog owners should be mindful of the disturbance to their pet’s daily routine and to be aware of any changes in their dog’s behaviour.
“We urge households to discuss the importance of interacting in a safe and consistent manner with their family pet during this time. Now is also a good time to check in on your dog’s physical health. With people inevitably interacting more frequently and closely with their pets the potential for the transmission of Zoonotic diseases such as ringworm, mange, flea infestation and toxocariasis will increase over time," he said.
Director of Services of Cork County Council, Louis Duffy said that people with any concerns regarding their dog’s behaviour, particularly aggressive behaviour, should seek the professional advice of their veterinary practitioner.