First case of human-to-animal transmission of monkeypox. A dog allegedly contracted the infection from its owners, a gay couple living in Paris. The Lancet magazine reports it: it happened in early June when the two men, 44 and 27 years old, respectively, who are part of an open couple, developed symptoms after having sex with other men.
Monkeypox, 4-year-old girl infected in Germany: she has no symptoms
The discovery of virologists
The two, who went to the Pitié-Salpêtrière hospital for treatment, however, noticed that their dog, an Italian greyhound, also had ulcers and some rashes on his stomach. The dog then tested positive for monkeypox swab, in the same variant that its owners were positive for. The dog slept with the owners, and may have become infected through contact with their injuries.
“The dog probably licked the sick human and then himself,” explained Professor Lynora Saxinger, who teaches virology at the University of Alberta. Apparently, in fact, there were traces in the dog’s saliva.
Symptoms of monkeypox
Monkeypox is a ‘very rare’ disease that generally presents with ‘fever, myalgia, lymphadenopathy (swollen glands) and a rash on the hands and face, similar to chickenpox’. The health of suspect patients is evolving “favorably”, although it is necessary to keep them “under observation” for the possibility that someone may need hospitalization, say the health authorities. Generally “its transmission occurs through the respiratory tract”, but contagion is possible through “contact with the mucous membranes during sexual intercourse”.