Animals from almost every state in U.S. have been tested for SARS-CoV-2

Animals from almost every state in U.S. have been tested for SARS-CoV-2

As of October 15, animals from almost every state in the U.S. have been tested for SARS-CoV-2, according to an update shared with veterinary organizations by the CDC COVID-19 One Health Working Group on October 20.

The top 5 states currently testing animals for SARS-CoV-2 are:

  1. Texas
  2. Pennsylvania
  3. California
  4. New York
  5. Georgia

Routine testing of animals for SARS-CoV-2 is still not recommended by the CDC.

Of the 1,523 animals tested in the U.S., 710 have been dogs and 506 have been cats. Dogs and cats represent 80% of animals tested. Only 5% (74) of the animals tested have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. Approximately 1/3 of animals tested were tested due to signs of clinical illness; others were proactively tested as a part of group care facility testing, potential COVID-19 exposure, or endangered species status.

Of the companion animals that have tested positive for the virus, only seven have died. For all seven deaths, the CDC reports the SARS-CoV-2 infection was an incidental finding and was not the cause of death in any companion animals.SARS-CoV-2 is considered to be an emerging disease by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). As such, the USDA must report confirmed animal infections in the U.S. to the OIE.

Outbreaks at mink farms continue to be a concern. The CDC is reporting that 184 mink farms in 4 counties have experienced SARS-CoV-2 positive cases. In the U.S. alone, 11 mink farms have been confirmed infected with SARS-CoV-2. According to the Fur Commission USA, as of 2018 there were 245 fur farms in the U.S., representing 22 states.


CVMA will continue to participate in informational calls with the CDC COVID-19 One Health Working Group and will share additional updates and information as it becomes available.