Petting zoos and fairs give people of all ages the exciting opportunity to interact with animals face-to-face. This allows people to learn more about animals but it can also put people at risk of becoming ill from these animals.
A new resource from the South Dakota Department of Health – their webpage, Preventing Illness Associated With Animal Contact has information and resources that can help people understand how to reduce these risks for themselves and their families.
Even healthy animals can carry germs that make people sick and should be treated as such. All animals, animal environments (fences, buckets, gates, etc.), or animal products are potentially contaminated with pathogens such as Shiga-toxin producing E. coli, Salmonella, and Cryptosporidiosis.
The new website shows tips, downloadable posters, data, and resources that anyone can use.
In addition, a lot of great information on the subject was covered at a recent South Dakota One Health Seminar. The South Dakota One Health website contains the presentations from that meeting, including an overview of enteric diseases in South Dakota, a doctor’s experiences with these illnesses, zoonotic disease associated with goats, regulations and permitting, and considerations for people hosting visitors to their farms.