National Zoo vaccinates primates against COVID-19
The Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute vaccinated several of their primates against COVID-19 this week, saying it was just the beginning of animal coronavirus inoculations at their facilities.
In a press release on Friday, the zoo said staff administered the first round of two-dose shots to 11 animals on Wednesday: seven orangutans, a western lowland gorilla, one white-eared titi monkey and two emperor tamarins.
ATLANTA ZOO TREATING 13 GORILLAS FOR COVID-19A video posted by the zoo noted that the "animals were rewarded with honey for their participation."
The vaccine used was developed specifically for animals by Michigan-based veterinary pharmaceutical company Zoetis, after the company saw that a dog in China contracted the virus early in the pandemic.
Zoetis said in a press release in July that their shots were authorized on a "case by case basis by the United States Department of Agriculture" for an array of zoo animals, but said the shots are "not needed in pets or livestock at this time."
AUSTRALIAN RESCUE DOGS SHOT OVER COVID RESTRICTIONS: REPORTThe National Zoo also provided a status update on the lions and tigers under their care that had tested "presumptive positive" for COVID-19 last month, saying the big cats were "recovering well" and "behaving, eating and drinking normally."
The National Zoo did not immediately respond to Fox News' questions regarding the inoculations.
Zoos in different parts of the country have increasingly been vaccinating myriad species with the Zoetis vaccine.
The Denver Zoo and Oakland Zoo used the jab on some of their animals over the summer, CBS News reported, and the Denver Zoo is planning to do the same thing.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPFOX 35 reported Thursday that ZooTampa has also begun vaccinating its residents.
"Species such as Florida panthers, skunks, otters and primates are on top of the list to vaccinate," Fox 35 reported.
"The Zoo has received enough doses to vaccinate roughly 19 species which includes 93 animals."