Los Angeles Public Health Offers Free COVID-19 Testing for Pets After City Records Zero Pet Cases

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The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is giving free COVID-19 tests to animals that are thought to have the virus even though there have been no COVID positives among tested animals.

Los Angeles health officials announced the program on Saturday, citing new funding for free COVID-19 testing for pets from the CDC.

“Veterinary Public Health has received funding from the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to support surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 in animals in Los Angeles County,” a statement on LA Public Health read.

“SARS-CoV-2 is the virus that causes COVID-19.  This project will help us to learn more about COVID-19 from a One Health perspective, meaning that we can learn more about the significance of COVID-19 in human, animal, and environmental relationships.

“Some of the funds will support local testing of animals for SARS-CoV-2.  We will partner with and offer free testing to various animal care facilities and agencies throughout LA County.

“Our goal is to test many different species of animals including wildlife (deer, bats, raccoons), pets (dogs, cats, hamsters, pocket pets), marine mammals (seals), and more,” LA Public Health said.

No positive results have been found in any of the 177 animals that have been tested so far, which include a wide variety of common household pets such as dogs, cats, hamsters, rabbits, and guinea pigs.

LA public health also tested wild animals including 107 bats, 12 raccoons, 7 squirrels, 1 mule deer, 12 coyotes, 3 skunks, 6 opossums, 1 rat, and 6 sea lions.

Source: Los Angeles Public Health

The initiative was criticized on the internet, with many online critics arguing that it was a waste of money.

After making a public announcement on its Twitter account, the Los Angeles Department of Public Health was met with a barrage of criticism.

“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,” LA Public Health wrote on Twitter.

LA Public Health released a statement after turning off the comment section.

“This account is now for informational purposes only and, for that reason, public comments are limited to live “town hall” type events it conducts wherein it solicits questions from the public during the live vent. Once such events are concluded, the Department will then close the live event post to public comments. Other posts will remain closed to public comments,” LA Public Health said in a statement.

“Residents who have questions or are looking for guidance can send a direct message and Public Health will respond as soon as possible,” the statement concluded.

The Gateway Pundit previously reported that authorities in the Chinese port city of Xiamen were checking every newly captured seafood, from fish and crabs to shrimp to try to stem the spread of the Covid-19 virus.

According to the city’s fishery supervisor, PCR testing must be conducted on all fishermen and their catch upon their return to Xiamen, a popular tourist city in the southeastern Chinese province of Fujian.

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