Four more tigers and three lions have tested positive for the novel coronavirus at a New York zoo; after a report of the first case of a tiger testing positive to the virus there earlier in April.
“All eight cats continue to do well, they are behaving normally; eating well, and their coughing is greatly reduced,’’ the Bronx Zoo said in a press release.
Faecal tests confirmed that three tigers and three African lions that had exhibited a cough had the infection; as well as a fourth tiger that never developed a cough.
In early April, the zoo reported that a 4-year-old female Malayan tiger called Nadia; became the first case of a tiger testing positive.
“Our cats were infected by a staff person who was asymptomatically infected with the virus; or before that person developed symptoms,’’ the zoo said.
None of the zoo’s leopards, cheetahs, pumas or servals are showing signs of illness; according to the zoo, which has been closed since mid-March.
According to the news release, “There is no evidence that animals play a role in the transmission of COVID-19 to people; other than the initial event in the Wuhan market.
Also, no evidence that any person has been infected with COVID-19 in the U.S. by animals; including by pet dogs or cats.”
Referring to the Chinese city where the virus is believed to have been transferred to people at a wildlife market.
In the meantime, health officials disclosed that two cats in New York were the first pets to test positive for the novel coronavirus in the U.S.