FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21) - Two tigers at the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
The kids' zoo made the announcement on social media Saturday morning.
Friday evening, zoo staff received positive test results for both Sumatran tigers Bugara and Indah.
On Monday, a keeper noticed one of the tigers had mild symptoms consistent with COVID-19.
Staff took a fecal sample and a veterinary laboratory confirmed the news.
“Bugara, the male Sumatran tiger, has been experiencing a dry cough, and Indah, the female Sumatran tiger, has not shown symptoms at this time” reports Dr. Kami Fox, Staff Veterinarian.
“Both tigers are being watched for any additional clinical signs and remain together in their enclosure."
It's not clear how the two tigers were infected, and the zoo is working with the Allen County Department of Health and the State Board of Animal Health to identify potential sources.
The zoo is now implementing extra safety precautions to follow additional CDC guidelines and the AZA Species Survival Plan:
- Restricted access to the tiger holding area
- Increased PPE to include a face shield in addition to a N95 mask, scrubs worn over clothing, disposable shoe coverings or designated footwear to be worn only in the tiger holding area, and two pairs of disposable gloves to be worn at all times
- Daily fecal samples collected from each tiger are being submitted to Zoo veterinary staff
The Indiana Board of Animal Health will decide if testing should be performed on additional animals, the zoo said.
At this point, no other animals have been tested.
Pets and zoo animals contracting the virus is not unheard of.
Animals at a New York zoo and others across the country have been diagnosed with the virus, according to the CDC.
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