AVMA working group releases new guidelines on Ebola and pets

Nina Pham is reunited with her dog, Bentley, after a 21-day quarantine.

An American Veterinary Medical Association working group released two important documents that may help answer some questions raised in the aftermath of the Ebola virus- what to do about pets who are exposed. Veterinarians and public health officials have been working hard to develop interim guidelines based on the newest scientific research on Ebola and pets.

Last October, Excalibur- a Spanish Ebola patient’s dog- was controversially euthanized. When a Dallas nurse was diagnosed with Ebola, former Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program resident Dr. Cate McManus assisted in the quarantine and subsequent release of Pham’s dog, Bentley.
  • Can pets transmit the Ebola virus?
  • How do you know if pets should be quarantined, and for how long?
  • What kinds of assessments need to take place?
  • What other resources are out there?

The two AVMA articles below provide some initial guidance as researchers continue to work on these issues.

Interim Guidance for Public Health Officials on Pets of Ebola Virus Disease Contacts

Interim Guidance for Dog or Cat Quarantine after Exposure to a Human with Confirmed Ebola Virus Disease