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When Spanish authorities seized and euthanized Excalibur, the 12-year old dog of a nurse who contracted the Ebola virus, concern over whether dogs could catch and/or transmit the virus to humans were raised.
So, when Dallas nurse, Nina Pham contracted the virus, her Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Bentley, was immediately quarantined – with one huge difference: unlike officials in Madrid, Dallas Animal Services vowed to do everything possible to keep him safe and happy until he and his human mom were both cleared of the deadly disease.
Because it takes up to 21-days from the time one is exposed to Ebola until the onset of symptoms, Bentley will be quarantined for the three week period. Animal Services have begun testing his urine and feces for the virus and all tests have turned up negative.
The test results show that Bentley has tested negative for the virus,” Dallas city officials said in a statement. “Specimen collection will be conducted again before the end of the 21-day quarantine period. Bentley will be monitored for a full 21-day period, similar to people exposed to the Ebola virus.”
While his only visitors have been those completely protected behind hazmat suits, Bentley is getting as much love and attention as possible while he’s in quarantine. Those caring for him from the Veterinary Emergency Team at Texas A&M University send Pham frequent snapshots of her best pal, playing, eating, and wagging his tail, so that she can continue to improve, knowing her boy is getting the best care possible.
Bentley, who’s mom is doing very well and expected to recover from the virus, will be tested again before his 21-day quarantine is up on November 1. In the meantime, his caretakers give him plenty of treats, toys, and attention. He absolutely adores his caretakers – especially when they give belly rubs!
Our fingers and paws are crossed for this sweet boy and his mom!