Tigers (and other cats) can catch the coronavirus
Malayan tiger cub in its enclosure at the Bronx Zoo. It’s unclear whether this is one of the tigers that was exposed to the novel coronavirus. | Photo by Andrew Lichtenstein / Corbis via Getty Images
When I heard that a tiger at the Bronx Zoo tested positive for COVID-19, I started to worry about my own little lion, a tabby cat with asthma. I’ve sequestered myself away from friends and family, but could my company be unwittingly putting my cat at risk? While there have been some cases of animals contracting COVID-19, it’s rare — and there are precautions that pet owners can take if they’re worried about their furry family members.
Coronaviruses are zoonotic, which means that they can be passed between animals and humans. In New York City, the virus apparently jumped from an asymptomatic human to three lions and four tigers, including four-year-old tiger Nadia, that tested positive for the virus. The zoo says it expects all of the…