Preprint: Susceptibility of alpaca, cattle, sheep, horse, goat and rabbit to intranasal infection with SARS-CoV-2

Alpaca, Animals, Coronavirus, Cows, Goat, Health, Horses, Infection, PCR, Preprint, Rabbits, Research, Sheep, Spillover, Symptoms, Testing, Transmission, Zoonosis

“We report pilot studies to evaluate the susceptibility of common domestic livestock (cattle, sheep, goat, alpaca, rabbit, and horse) to intranasal infection with SARS-CoV-2.”.


  • None of the infected animals shed infectious virus via nasal, oral, or faecal routes
  • Viral RNA was detected in several animals.
  • Neutralizing antibody titres were low or non-existent one month following infection.
  • Several individual animals (1 calf, 2 goats, and one rabbit) had RT–PCR positive nasal and/or oral swabs,
  • Live virus was isolated from the trachea of one calf necropsied on 3 DPI
  • While several animals developed low-level neutralizing antibodies within 14 days of infection, the majority were seronegative by 28 DPI
  • None of the animals displayed any clinical signs of disease or fever following inoculation
  • The lack of shedding in alpacas, which are highly susceptible to MERS-CoV, suggests camelids are unlikely to serve as a source for a recombination event between MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2
  • These results suggest that domestic livestock species are poorly competent hosts for SARS-CoV-2 and are unlikely to contribute to disease transmission or epidemiology
  • No reason to believe that newer human-adapted variants are any more likely to replicate in these poorly susceptible species



Preprint: Susceptibility of livestock to SARS-CoV-2 infection



Gamaleya Institute: ‘The next stage of the epidemic is the infection with the coronavirus of farm and domestic animals’





Image by Daniel Brachlow from Pixabay