• A 4-year-old female tiger at the Bronx Zoo in New York City tested positive for COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, the zoo said on Sunday.
  • A caretaker at the zoo who had COVID-19 but was asymptomatic infected the tiger, the zoo said.
  • The zoo said the tigers had decreased appetites but are expected to recover.
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In a case of human-to-animal transmission, a tiger at the Bronx Zoo has tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

The New York City zoo said on Sunday that Nadia, a 4-year-old female tiger, tested positive, and that the diagnosis was confirmed by the US Department of Agriculture's National Veterinary Services Laboratory.

The zoo, which is managed by the Wildlife Conservation Society, said that Nadia, three other tigers, and three African lions had developed dry coughs and had decreased appetites but are expected to recover. None of the zoo's other big cats, including tigers in another area of the zoo, has shown symptoms, but it has taken measures to prevent exposure.

The zoo said the cats were infected by a caretaker who had COVID-19 but was asymptomatic. It said it doesn't yet know how the virus affects big cats.

Nadia was tested "out of an abundance of caution, the zoo said, adding that it hopes any information gained will contribute to the world's understanding of the virus, which has infected more than 1 million people.

There is no evidence that animals can spread COVID-19 to people, the USDA said in a statement, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that people with the virus avoid contact with pets and other animals.

The USDA and the CDC said there have been no reports of pets getting sick with COVID-19 in the US. They said they would monitor the situation but would not recommend testing other animals at this time.

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