Petting zoos are a fun and often educational family experience but parents and kids need to beware of certain precautions that should be taken. The McDonough County Health Department wants parents to take care to avoid getting sick when taking kids to outdoor animal events. In a release from the Health Department, experts are offering tips on how to enjoy animal events from rodeos, to petting zoos to state fair competitions while staying healthy.
Tip Number 1: Locate the hand washing stations. Make sure after the kids have had their fun petting the animals that they wash their hands soon after.
Tip Number 2: Keep your food and drinks away from the animals. It might seem fun to offer the animals at an outdoor show a treat but remember it's not just potentially unhealthy for you, the wrong food could be unhealthy for the animal as well.
Tip Number 3: Don't allow children to put their hands in their mouths after touching animals. Yes, getting a child to keep from sucking a thumb or simply putting their hands to their face for whatever reason but the chances of a child getting sick from animal contact, while minimal, still remain. Wash hands immediately after petting animals.
Get more tips by contacting the McDonough County Health Department at 309-837-9951.