By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

Officials with the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) announced confirmation of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) in a ferret in Florida.

Image by Michael Sehlmeyer from Pixabay

This is the first ferret confirmed with the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the United States. A ferret was previously reported with the virus in Slovenia.

Samples from the ferret were taken after it showed clinical signs including sneezing and coughing. It is suspected that the ferret acquired the infection from a person with COVID-19.

Samples from the ferret tested presumptive positive at Florida’s Bronson Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory and the case was confirmed at NVSL.

SARS-CoV-2 infections have been reported in a small number of animal species worldwide, mostly in animals that had close contact with a person with COVID-19. At this time, routine testing of animals is not recommended.

SARS-CoV-2 has been previously reported in cats, dogs, tigers, mink, otter, gorillas, lions, snow leopards and a cougar.