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Buddy, The First Dog To Test Positive For COVID-19 In The US, Has Died

Buddy passed away after a three-month battle. 💔

Buddy, a 7-year-old German shepherd from Staten Island , New York, was the primary dog to check positive for COVID-19 within the US. He died on July 11 after a three-month illness, consistent with National Geographic.



Robert and Allison Mahoney of Staten Island told National Geographic that Buddy developed breathing problems in mid-April after Robert had been sick with the coronavirus for several weeks. A veterinarian tested Buddy in May and located him positive for the virus.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported in June that a German shepherd in ny state was the primary dog within the country to check positive for COVID-19, but didn't identify the owners.

Photo Credit: National Geographic


Buddy’s health declined steadily after he developed breathing problems and thick nasal mucus in April. He was euthanized on July 11 after he started vomiting clotted blood, the Mahoneys told National Geographic.


It’s unknown if the coronavirus played a task in his death. Blood tests indicated Buddy likely had lymphoma, a cancer of the system , veterinarians told the family.

Photo Credit: National Geographic


The Mahoneys didn’t learn that lymphoma was being considered because the evidence of his symptoms until the day of his death, they say, when additional bloodwork results confirmed it. It’s unclear whether cancer made him more vulnerable to contracting the coronavirus, or if the virus made him ill, or if it had been just a case of coincidental timing.

A spokesman for the ny City Department of Health said arrangements were made to require the dog’s body for a necropsy but when the instructions were shared with the veterinarian, the body had already been cremated.

Photo Credit: National Geographic


A USDA database of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in animals within the us includes 12 dogs, 10 cats, a tiger and a lion. The agency says there's currently no evidence that animals play a big role in spreading the coronavirus but it appears the virus can spread from people to animals in some situations, consistent with TIME.
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