In the Netherlands, a second person may have been infected with the novel corona virus in a mink.
According to the Dutch authorities, an employee of a mink farm near Eindhoven “very likely” contracted one of the animals. However, the risk of further spread by the animals is low. Last week, the Department of Agriculture reported a first transfer to a mink farm employee.
Two farms near Eindhoven were closed at the end of April after corona infections were found in the animals. The ministry has taken measures for mink farms. All companies must carry out virus tests, visits to plants with cases of infection are prohibited. The authorities also examined whether the virus could have been transmitted from one farm to another by wild cats. According to government reports, three cats in one of the facilities showed the virus.
Which animals are infected?
It is still unclear which animals can transmit the virus to humans. And reliable information about which animals are infected is rare. Cases were known from Belgium and France in which cats had become infected from their owners who were ill. However, science does not consider it likely that the corona virus will spread to pets. The Friedrich Loeffler Institute also sees it that way. The institute observes animal diseases throughout Germany and says: Dogs, cats and other pets do not play a relevant role in the spread of the corona virus.
The same applies to livestock, director of the institute Thomas Mettenleiter told Deutschlandfunk Kultur.
None of feathered farm animals such as chicken, duck or turkey have been shown to be susceptible to the new corona virus. The same applies to pigs. “They were tested at three different institutions and none of them led to an infection. This means that these animals are obviously not susceptible to this infection.” And that would not allow them to spread the pathogen either.
It is different with ferrets, by the way. According to Mettenleiter, they don’t get sick, but they pass the virus on. And mink – as in the Netherlands – apparently too.
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