DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Ever since officials confirmed Dallas nurse Nina Pham tested positive for Ebola over the weekend there has been an outpouring of concern about not only her, but her dog too.
A photo from Pham’s Facebook page shows her in a car, with her dog, named Bentley, snuggling up to her face.
Monday afternoon Dallas Code Enforcement arrived at Pham’s apartment to remove the dog, a King Charles spaniel, Bentley, and begin Phase II decontamination. The mission was dubbed “saving Bentley.”
Someone took an animal carrier into the apartment and more than an hour after arriving and took the dog from the location. Officials aren’t saying where Bentley is being taken or what the long-term plans are for the animal’s care. Officials with the City of Dallas later tweeted out a picture of hte Dallas skyline, saying that was Bentley’s view from his temporary home.
Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins has promised that the city would take “good care” of the dog.
The dog had remained at the apartment since Pham’s diagnosis, with water and food being delivered for it.
According to Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there has been at least one major study that indicated dogs could spread Ebola. But Sharon Curtis Granskog, a spokeswoman for the American Veterinary Medical Association, said there is only a very small chance that dogs in the U.S. cold spread Ebola because the animals aren’t near corpses or eating infected dead animals.
The American Veterinary Medical Association admits it knows little about dogs and Ebola, but they do say there’s no evidence humans can pass it to their pets.
Judge Jenkins confirmed the dog would not be euthanized, like the pet of a Spanish nurse also diagnosed with Ebola.
At Dee’s Doggie Den concerned customers were calling all day, wondering about the safety of their own pets.
Owner Dee Moore said people were calling, “…wanting to know whether or not her [Nina Pham] dog had been here. Which i think is not a fair question to ask, because we don’t think her dog is contagious in any way.”
Pham, 26, somehow contracted Ebola while caring for now deceased patient Thomas Eric Duncan while he was being treated at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. She remains hospitalized.
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