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Denver Zoo reports world’s first coronavirus cases in hyenas

DENVER —
Two hyenas on the Denver Zoo have examined constructive for the coronavirus, the primary confirmed instances among the many animals worldwide, a nationwide veterinary lab introduced Friday.

Samples from a wide range of animals on the zoo, together with the noticed hyenas, had been examined after a number of lions on the facility grew to become unwell, in response to the Nationwide Veterinary Companies Laboratories. The hyena samples examined presumptive constructive at a lab at Colorado State College, and the instances had been confirmed by the nationwide lab.

Along with the 2 hyenas, 11 lions and two tigers on the zoo examined constructive for the virus.

“Hyenas are famously robust, resilient animals which are recognized to be extremely tolerant to anthrax, rabies and distemper. They’re in any other case wholesome and anticipated to make a full restoration,” the zoo mentioned in an announcement.

Zoo officers mentioned the hyenas — 22-year-old Ngozi and 23-year-old Kibo — are experiencing gentle signs, together with slight lethargy, some nasal discharge and an occasional cough.

The opposite animals that examined constructive in latest weeks have both absolutely recovered or are on the trail to a full restoration.

“We now know that many different species could also be inclined to COVID-19 primarily based on a number of experiences, and we proceed to make use of the best stage of care and precaution when working with all of our 3,000 animals and 450 completely different species,” the assertion mentioned.

Infections have been reported in a number of species worldwide, largely in animals that had shut contact with an individual with COVID-19, in accordance the the US Division of Agriculture, which oversees the NVSL. A information launch Friday mentioned scientists are nonetheless studying about coronavirus infections in animals, however primarily based on the knowledge out there, the chance of animals spreading the virus to folks is low.

Folks with COVID-19 ought to keep away from shut contact with animals, together with pets, to guard them from potential an infection, in response to the information launch.

The NVSL serves as a world reference lab, offering testing for overseas and rising animal illnesses, in addition to providing steerage on diagnostic methods.

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