The University of Guelph

Our research at the University of Guelph improves life. We explore, we innovate, we invent, we educate; we create new knowledge that crosses natural, artificial and social boundaries to produce solutions that both protect and enlighten the eco-system of sustainable living. From how we feed the world to how we prosper and co-exist abroad and here at home, we will challenge the status quo and improve upon it.

The University of Guelph Blogs

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I’ve been a laggard with blog posts lately…it’s a bit crazy and it’s been easier to get things out quickly via Twitter (@weese_scott). However, one interesting topic I wanted to get back to is SARS-CoV-2 in deer. It’s caused a big stink in some areas and like a lot of things involving this virus and animals, we don’t really know the big picture implications yet. I wrote about it earlier, but some new data have…
As a journal Associate Editor and reviewer, I see lots of manuscripts about ‘new’ viruses. I tend not to get too excited about most because ‘new’ is usually just ‘new to us’, because as technology improves, we are now able to identify lots of viruses that we’ve been living with for years. Viruses are part of our ecosystem and most are harmless to us (and animals). So, it’s common to find ‘new’ viruses in sick…
This one’s still as easy to write as the first version…..we have no clue. Overall, the health risk to horses is probably very low. If horses were getting sick, or at least very sick, we’d presumably know. I’ve not had any indication that we’re seeing a disease impact. We still don’t know if horses are getting infected from people and whether, if infected, they can spread it back to people, between horses or to other…
Mink…not a species most people think about. When they do, it’s most often thoughts about mink coats or fur farming protests. While the mink industry has been on the decline in most regions, there is still a massive number of mink being farmed for fur internationally. Some of these farms are very large. Lots of animals in close contact with each other and with contact with people leads to risk of passing pathogens such as…
Mink are not a species most people think about. When they do, they typically think of mink coats or fur farming protests. While the mink industry has been on the decline in most regions for many years, there is still a massive number of mink being farmed for fur internationally. Some of these farms are very large, which makes for lots of animals in close contact with each other, and in contact with their human…
What we know about SARS-CoV-2 in pigs hasn’t changed a lot since the first version. It’s still a fairly ‘good news’ situation, but one that could also use some more investigation. Are pigs susceptible to this virus? Kind of, but not really. There are somewhat conflicting experimental data but the debate really is whether pigs have little vs no susceptibility to the virus. There is obviously a difference between ‘no’ and ‘yes, but only a…
What we know about SARS-CoV-2 in pigs hasn’t changed a lot since the first version of this post. It’s still a fairly “good news” situation, but one that could also use some more investigation. Are pigs susceptible to SARS-CoV-2? Kind of, but not really.  There are somewhat conflicting experimental data, but the debate is really whether pigs have very little vs no susceptibility to the virus. There is obviously a difference between “no” and…
There’s not as much to update about dogs. We have more numbers but the overall issues and understanding haven’t changed. Spoiler alert….dogs and owners can both relax since the risks are very limited. Are dogs susceptible to this virus? Yes…but…not very…maybe. Depends what you mean by ‘susceptible’. Nice and clear, eh? There’s a difference between being infected and being sick. Yes, dogs can clearly become infected. However, they don’t seem to be as susceptible as…
Earlier, I wrote a series of posts about what we know about SARS-CoV-2 and different animal species. It’s a dynamic field so it’s about time I got around to updating them. We’ll start back at the beginning and in one of the most susceptible domestic species, the domestic cat. A lot of papers have come out in the interim, and they’ve largely supported what initial observations and have refined what we know. Are cats susceptible…
For the past year or more, we’ve been trying to track infectious upper respiratory tract disease (‘canine infectious respiratory disease syndrome’, CIRDC, or, more commonly, ‘kennel cough’). It’s a tough thing to do since testing is limited, it’s a disease that’s always present to some degree in the dog population and there’s no formal reporting system. How filled my inbox gets with enquiries seems to come in waves, but that’s probably more related to reporting…