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The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is offering free COVID-19 testing for pets who may have been exposed to the virus.
Los Angeles health officials announced the initiative on Aug. 20, stating that it has recently received funding to conduct the free COVIS-19 testing on pets.
“Your pet may be eligible for free SARS-CoV-2 testing if they were exposed to a human or animal with COVID-19 or has symptoms of COVID-19,” the health department tweeted.
Funding comes from the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to its website, which states that it will “support surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 in animals in Los Angeles County.”
The department says that it plans to offer free testing to animal care facilities and centers throughout Los Angeles County, and states that animals including “deer, bats, raccoons…dogs, cats, hamsters, pocket pets…seals,” will be tested.
Pet owners can request a free COVID-19 test for their pet if it is experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus or has been exposed to another animal, or human, who has the coronavirus.
Out of the 177 animals tested so far, including dogs, cats, bats, raccoons, skunks, rats, and sea lions, none have tested positive for COVID-19.