Pet dog tests positive for 'low level' coronavirus in Hong Kong

FILE- Dog with mask in China. (Photo by Getty Images)

A dog in Hong Kong could become the first known confirmed case of coronavirus in a pet.

The Hong Kong Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department said Friday that a dog belonging to a woman infected with the virus tested weak-positive to COVID-19.

The dog was placed in quarantine at the Hong Kong Port of Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge.

"The Department will conduct close monitoring of the above dog and collect further samples for testing to confirm if the dog has really been infected with the virus or this is a result of environmental contamination of the dog's mouth and nose," the AFCD said in a statement.

"The Department will conduct close monitoring of the above dog and collect further samples for testing to confirm if the dog has really been infected with the virus or this is a result of environmental contamination of the dog's mouth and nose."

The dog would be released if testing were to come back negative.

The AFCD has called on all residents who are infected with the coronavirus to turn their dogs in for a voluntary quarantine for 14 days.

The agency said there was no evidence to suggest that the deadly virus, which emerged in China late last year, can be transmitted to pet dogs or from pet dogs to humans.

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There are more than 80,000 confirmed cases worldwide.

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