Feeding and taking care of wildlife has given the novel coronavirus the chance of jumping species. Seemingly innocent interactions between humans and wildlife can actually pose a greater risk in a pandemic. There are tons of popular videos of people feeding deers or squirrels with their hands or letting their dogs socialize with a deer.
Since humans are currently the main source of transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19 has been found in 19 other animal species. Most of the animals are either domestic or live in captivity. What concerns scientists is the possibility that the virus could form new variants while in the animal and transmit it back to humans.
There has been no evidence of that happening in the wild. The only known cases of SARS-Cov-2 in the wild were found in mink and deer. Most of the minks infected were on fur farms, but a wild mink tested positive in Utah. In Denmark, there was a case where a mink infected by workers spread a new variant back to workers.
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