This is the first case of COVID-19 reported among non-human species.
As per the San Diego Zoo’s latest press release, the officials have confirmed that two gorillas in captivity have caught the COVID-19 virus. This was very much expected as the total COVID-19 cases in California have reached 2,710,801.
The zoo staff followed all the precautionary measures near the captivated animals; however, it is believed that an asymptomatic carrier of the virus affected the Gorillas. Till now, it is reported that a total of three gorillas have shown the symptoms to have caught the COVID-19 virus.
Gorillas With COVID-19 Symptoms
The zoo officials first doubted the presence of the virus amongst these animals on Wednesday, January 6. Some of the staff members reported that the Gorillas were coughing real bad.
Given the doubt, the San Diego Zoo authorities decided to test the Gorillas fecal sample for SARS-CoV-2. Those samples were later sent over to the Animal Health and Food Safety Laboratory, which confirmed the virus’s existence amongst the Gorilla squad.
Lisa Peterson, executive director at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, said, “Aside from some congestion and coughing, the gorillas are doing well. The troop remains quarantined together and are eating and drinking. We are hopeful for a full recovery soon.”
The previous detailed study of the virus suspected that the animals are in equal danger from the virus as humans. However, this is the first reported SARS-CoV-2 infection following the risks foreseen in the previous studies. Researchers are still clueless about what severe reactions these Gorillas could face, given they have caught the virus.
Cases for virus contraction in animals have been reported earlier too, where it is believed that some lions, tigers, snow leopards, dogs, mink, and domestic cats have caught the virus.