MIAMI (AP) — A ferret has tested positive for COVID-19 in Florida, federalofficials announced Friday.

This is the first ferret to test positive for COVID-19 in the United States,according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture news release. A ferret in theEuropean nation of Slovenia previously tested positive for the virus.

USDA officials said samples from the Florida ferret were tested after theanimal showed symptoms that included sneezing and coughing. Officials believethe ferret acquired the infection from a person with COVID-19.

The small mustelids are commonly kept as pets. Officials didn’t say where inFlorida the infected ferret was found.

COVID-19 has been reported in several animal species around the world, usuallyanimals that come in close contact with infected humans, officials said. TheUSDA said the the risk of animals spreading the virus to people is low anddoesn’t recommend routine testing for animals.

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