(BBC) – Two pet cats have tested positive for coronavirus in New York state, the first pets in the US to contract the infection, say officials.
The felines, which are based in two different parts of New York state, both had mild respiratory symptoms, but are expected to recover.
Scientists think it unlikely that a pet could transmit coronavirus to a person.
Previously, seven lions and tigers at the Bronx Zoo tested positive for the virus.
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) made the announcement about the two household cats on Wednesday.
One of the pets was tested when it showed signs of respiratory illness after its owner tested positive.
The other cat’s owners had not been tested for coronavirus.
There have been limited, isolated cases of pets catching coronavirus, but the two New York cats are the first to test positive in the US.
None of the pets that have caught the virus have become seriously ill. Scientists are investigating why.
The CDC has recommended that pet owners should not let pets interact with other people or animals outside their household.