Animals at Lincoln Children’s Zoo test positive for COVID-19

Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 10:52 AM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - The Lincoln Children’s Zoo said their Sumatran tigers and snow leopards have tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19.

According to Sarah Wood with the Lincoln Children’s Zoo, over the weekend, animal keepers observed symptoms consistent with the virus in some of the large cats.

Fecal samples as well as voluntary nasal swab samples for the large cats were collected and some tested positive.

Wood said all snow leopards and tigers are being treated with steroids and antibiotics to prevent secondary infection.

“Our Zoo team is working to ensure the affected animals receive the highest level of care as they recover,” Wood said. “Our veterinary team is following treatment plans used at other Zoos with successful COVID-19 felid recoveries.”

The tigers and the snow leopards will remain under close observation from the Zoo’s on-site veterinary staff and zookeepers. Zoo staff will manage the cats’ access to their outdoor habitats.

Wood says given the substantial distance between the animals and visitors, the public is not, nor has been, at any risk.

No other animals at the Zoo are showing any signs of infection.

All of the animals affected are anticipated to make a full recovery.

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