Zoo Animals Are Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine
Did you know that certain animals can get COVID-19? According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, some animals are susceptible to COVID-19. Some zoos are now trying to protect select animals against the coronavirus with their very own vaccines.
WCNC Charlotte announced that the North Carolina Zoo has begun the process of vaccinating their chimpanzees and gorillas. Like humans, the primates will receive two doses, each three weeks apart.
The zoo also plans to vaccinate their big cats, bears, wolves and otters. Once more research becomes available, they will consider vaccinating other species.
According to CNN, the Oakland and Denver zoos are also taking part, vaccinating their tigers and bears, among other mammals.
The World Health Organization has confirmed COVID-19 cases among cougars, otters, gorillas, tigers, dogs, cats, snow leopards, minks and lions.
Two endangered snow leopards at the San Diego Zoo recently tested positive after they developed a cough. The San Diego Zoo previously dealt with eight gorillas testing positive for the virus. They were most likely exposed to COVID-19 by one of their keepers, who later tested positive for it. They experienced symptoms including coughing, congestion, exhaustion and nasal discharge.
Animal health company Zoetis created a vaccine specifically for animals. The animal vaccine does not contain a live virus or mRNA, but rather it solely contains the antigen. Each animal receives the same dose no matter its size or species.