Andy Richardson: Now even cats like Felix can catch Covid-19
Animals are starting to retreat as humans emerge from lockdown. Some, however, are feeling the strain.
In New York, two cats tested positive for Covid-19, while tigers and lions at Bronx Zoo also caught the disease from humans. They’re making a full recovery and promise not to scratch their keepers.
One unaffected ‘animal’ is Spot, the robot dog. He’s been sheep herding in New Zealand, with good results. Two collie dogs who used to do that task sat down and watched. “Yeah, leave you to it mate. We’re off for a lie-down.”
Spot had earlier spied on park-goers in Singapore while voicing commands to physically distance. Next, he’ll whip up a brilliant Sunday roast before putting out the bins and dusting the TV stand. Who needs a real dog when you can have Spot?
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The clock is ticking on the UK’s test and trace policy, which is months behind other nations’. In a typically flamboyant, over-promise-and-under-deliver statement, BoJo said our system would be world-beating. Bookies are offering 500-1 that it won’t. South Korea and Germany lead the way, testing 60 contacts for each new infection.
Given that the UK has around 60,000 new cases each week, that would require 3.6 million tests. But we’re still struggling with Matt Hancock’s much-vaunted 100,000-per day, which leaves us about 2.9 million per week behind. Sadly, the only thing we’ve beaten the world at is mortality.
The French haven’t done particularly well either, though two boys discovered gold bars worth 100,000 euros on a camping trip in their garden. Sales of metal detectors have gone through the roof in the town of Vendome as other boys go hunting.
The fact that up to 30,000 British restaurants and pubs are likely to close shows the extent of economic scarring the UK. Customers looking for burger and fries followed by a chocolate fondant had better learn to cook.
Tilers and bricklayers have also lost work, though tree surgeons and gardeners are busier than ever. We may not be able to visit the hair dresser for a trim, but our privet hedges are looking great.
Still, lockdown-not-lockdown is easing and the Government is pinning its hopes on our teachers, unions and local councils uniting as they send kids back to school. The grand reopening is supposed to be happening a week today.
Anyone know how that’s going?
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