US

Snow Leopard At Kentucky Zoo Tests Positive For COVID-19

Kyle. L. Shepherd/courtesy Louisville Zoo

Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Font Size:

A snow leopard from the Louisville Zoo tested positive for COVID-19, the first to contract the disease in the U.S., officials said Friday.

Two other leopards at the zoo are being tested for the virus after showing symptoms of respiratory sickness, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said in a press release. All three animals “are expected to fully recover” and no other animals have symptoms, according to the press release. (RELATED: Tiger Tests Positive For Coronavirus At Tennessee Zoo)

“It is suspected that they acquired the infection from an asymptomatic staff member, despite precautions taken by the zoo,” the USDA release said.

“The snow leopards tested presumptive positive for SARS-CoV-2 at the University of Illinois Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, which then reported the results to state and federal officials,” according to the press release.

The infected snow leopard is a female named NeeCee, who is five years old, according to a zoo press release. The other leopards are males named Kimti and Meru.

WATCH:


“The snow leopards tested presumptive positive for SARS-CoV-2 at the University of Illinois Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, which then reported the results to state and federal officials,” according to the press release.

“Such testing is required for certain animal diseases in the U.S. in order to comply with national and international reporting procedures,” according to the press release.

Testing animals doesn’t reduce coronavirus tests for humans, the press release said.

The USDA is required to report animal coronavirus cases to the World Organization for Animal Health because they see coronavirus as “an emerging disease,” according to the press release.

The zoo said its considered a small risk for the virus to transmit between animals to people, The Associated Press reported. While the leopards recover, the exhibit is closed but the zoo remains open.

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.