Coronavirus In Animals

There is no single coronavirus; the term “coronavirus” instead refers to a group of related RNA viruses that cause illnesses in both mammals and birds. Animals that have been infected include the following:


Birds: Night herons, turkeys, Chinese bulbuls, common moorhens, geese, ducks

Mammals: Bats, rats, mice, mink, ferrets, civets, hedgehogs, cats, dogs, cattle, swine, beluga whales

And, of course, humans.


The following are coronavirus variants that can appear in animals:


Avian coronavirus

This coronavirus variant affects birds; one strain, formerly known as infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), affects chickens. It causes avian infectious bronchitis, which affects the respiratory, gut, kidney, and reproductive systems; it affects the performance of both meat- and egg-producing chickens. Another strain, previously known as turkey coronavirus, causes GI disease in turkeys.


Transmissible gastroenteritis coronavirus


Also known as Transmissible gastroenteritis virus, or TGEV, this coronavirus infects pigs by reducing their capability for digesting food. This results in the pigs dying of dehydration; the mortality rate in piglets less than one week old is almost 100%.


Murine coronavirus


Murine coronavirus is a coronavirus that infects mice; it causes both Murine hepatitis virus and fancy rat coronavirus, among others.


Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus


Also called PED virus or PEDV, this coronavirus is another one that infects pigs. It infects the cells lining the small intestine, which can lead to a condition called porcine epidemic diarrhea.


Canine coronavirus

Canine coronavirus antigen (arrows) in canine lung tissue

Abbreviated as CCoV, this coronavirus causes a highly contagious intestinal disease in dogs. The incubation period is about one to three days; symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, and anorexia.


Feline coronavirus

As its name states, this is a virus that infects cats; it is typically passed between the fecal-oral route. It has two forms: feline enteric coronavirus and feline infectious peritonitis virus.


Bovine coronavirus

Abbreviated as BCV or BCoV, this is a coronavirus that affects cattle. In calves, it causes calf enteritis, and contributes to the enzootic pneumonia complex; in adult cattle, it causes winter dysentery.


Bulbul coronavirus HKU11

This coronavirus is found in the bird known as a Chinese bulbul.


Coronavirus HKU15


Also called Porcine coronavirus HKU15, this is yet another coronavirus found in pigs; it was first associated with porcine diarrhea in 2014.


Check out today’s other article by me to find out about coronavirus variants that can infect humans.

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