Ferret tests positive for coronavirus in Florida, authorities say

MIAMI, Fla. – Federal authorities announced Friday that a sneezing and coughing ferret in Florida tested positive for the coronavirus.

According the National Veterinary Services Laboratories of the United States Department of Agriculture, the ferret is the first in the country to test positive for the virus that causes COVID-19.

The Florida Bronson Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory conducted the ferret test, according to the USDA. Authorities suspect that a person infected the ferret.

The USDA reported of the rare case to the World Organization for Animal Health. Authorities do not recommend routine testing of animals. People with COVID-19 can spread the virus to animals during close contact, according the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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