A tiger at a New York zoo has tested positive for the new coronavirus. Samples from the four-year-old Malayan tiger were taken and tested after the tiger, five other tigers and lions at the Bronx Zoo developed a dry cough and showed signs of respiratory illnesses.
The COVID-19 test for the tiger was confirmed by USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratory, based in Ames, Iowa.
“Though they have experienced some decrease in appetite, the cats at the Bronx Zoo are otherwise doing well under veterinary care and are bright, alert, and interactive with their keepers,” the zoo said.
According to a news release from the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo, the tiger and the zoo’s other cats are doing well.
It is believed that the animals were infected by a zoo employee who was “asymptomatically infected with the virus” while caring for them.
This latest development on the pandemic will shine the spotlight on human-animal transmission of the disease. According to earlier reports from the World Organisation for Animal Health, there’s no evidence that dogs can spread the disease or that the disease can cause an animal to fall ill though further studies may bring new findings.
More information regarding pet health amid the pandemic can be found on their website.