grid sampled virus database?

So a dog just tested positive for the coronavirus:

I’m beginning to think this particular coronavirus is already everywhere, and not the real culprit. (In another thread, which I admit didn’t go over well, I voiced my suspicion that what China really was seeing was a normal flu season hitting vapers who damaged their lungs with new bad additives.) To decide whether this particular virus is the culprit it would help to have a database of virus genomes sampled over a grid all over the world, with their frequency in various hosts. In fact, I wonder why there isn’t one. If there is, where can I read about it? If not, why not?

If you read it at Breitbart, it must be true! OMG! We’re all gonna die! :dubious:

Hey, I’m not panicing. As I explained in my original post, I firmly believe it’s a run of the mill virus and the whole freak out was due to vapers who damaged their lungs with new bad additives experiencing a run of the mill flu season. Can we really doubt that a dog tested positive for the coronavirus because of the political leanings of the news source? I don’t. Can someone find a source for it which people haven’t blocked out of consideration?

Oh and the thread is really about a grid sampled virus database. We are getting off track. Look even if Breitbart made up the story (I don’t think they would do something like that), I am still very interested in learning about such a dayabase or lack therof, and the reasons why not or any limitations, etc.

If they don’t systematically take random samples from every person in the population, or at least every person who visits a hospital, how would you estimate the frequency of what people have?

When you do download viral genomes it does say where and when it was sampled, so you can obviously start mapping out gross differences without working too hard.

The people are the easiest. I can think of many easy ways. Here’s a good one: sequence the genomes of all the microscopic critters in donated blood. The animals are more difficult. You would create lots of jobs for people with biology degrees and the like who would otherwise be trying to get work on field research teams studying various animals.

The dog tested positive for “a” corona virus or “the” corona virus? Dogs have a corona virus that causes diarrhea. One of our dogs had corona as a puppy and we were told it wasn’t uncommon. She recovered in a few days.

Cats also get corona virus infections that aren’t a big teal unless the virus mutates, in which case it causes feline infectious peritonitis which usually is deadly to cats.

ETA: I just looked at our dogs’ vaccine records. They were each vaccinated against distemper, corona, parvo, etc last year.

The article was more concerned with contamination making it a false positive. But that is going off on a tangent. I’m really wondering about the virus database. The dog made me wonder how we would know if the virus wasn’t already all over the place when people started freaking out. A grid sampled virus databse could be searched for the gene sequence and where it already was and when it first popped up. If there is/was no reason to freak out in the other spots, then you know you have the wrong culprit for the particular problem. (In this case I think it is a typical virus blamed for the abnormal problems lung-damaged vapers were having from typical flu-season threats after vaping new, dangerous additives.)

But since this has already been demonstrated to not be true and you keep repeating it, why should we believe that a global database would have any better impact on your reasoning?

The WHO, CDC, and other national health organizations track this sort of thing constantly. They already know that COVID-19 has nothing do do with vaping related illnesses, especially the Vitamin E additives. You appear to be putting out a wide net looking for something to make this into something it is not.

They are two unrelated things for sure. But when you try to assess “how dangerous is COVID-19” it is relative to who it is infecting. My bet is in populations without dangerous vape products it will be like a typical flu season threat. Unfortunately I don’t think anyone knows the numbers for any particular country. People are wondering: “what is the proper numerator?” for countries they think are lying or unable to track it. And I think for every country the denominator is in doubt, as not everyone is tested for COVID-19, and not even every sick person. And it appears the more mild cases tend to not be tested, which makes the denominator too low, and the rate estimate too high. A virus database would NOT let you find the right denominator either, but you could at least say something like “no one had reson to freak out in this other place it showed up three months ago, so go back to the drawing board in finding the cause for the abnormality that is alarming you”.

Why is everyone ignoring the truly important question?

Was the dog vaping?

The kind of testing you suggest is a lot easier now that it would have been 5 years ago, or 2 years ago, but it’s still impossible. Testing couldn’t even keep up with the initial COVID-19 testing, much less generic testing of everybody everywhere for everything.

There is also the question of how much you want your government and foreign governments and strangers to know about what viruses your community has been exposed to, but we haven’t even begun to get into that debate, because what you are suggesting just isn’t possible yet.

At the moment, if someone set up a “grid” database, what it would show is that most of the world hasn’t been tested for anything, and that tiny parts of the world have been tested for a tiny number of things.

Okay, Raw Story is reporting the story about the dog too.

Hong Kong pets face coronavirus quarantine after dog tests positive

The source seems to be Agence France-Presse, but as is common in Raw Story articles, there is no link, and the text only cites unnamed “Hong Kong authorities”.

ETA: A quick google search shows that the story is all over the news now.

For me, the most interesting aspect of this thread is that some Dopers get their news from Breitbart; others from RawStory. Why? I’ve started a thread in IMHO hoping someone can help me understand this.

Who’s paying for all this? Lotsa shiny new jobs is A-OK by me, but where’s the money for their salaries coming from?