Salmonella outbreaks linked to backyard chickens and ducks. Texas leads the nation in reported sicknesses

T. Ware
Backyard ducks and chickens linked to recent salmonella outbreaks -Luis Quijada/Unsplash

Backyard chickens and ducks can lead to health problems. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) raises concerns about them, pointing to 572 or more salmonella illnesses across the nation and two deaths.

Texas reports 37 salmonella sicknesses—the most in the U.S. California follows with 33 reported cases. Between June 9 and July 13, 2022, 353 new illnesses were reported. The numbers could be higher. Per the CDC, many people recover without requiring medical attention.

Healthy-looking chickens and ducks can carry salmonella

Salmonella is bacteria that can cause stomach cramps, fever, and diarrhea. According to the CDC,

“Backyard poultry, such as chickens and ducks, can carry salmonella germs even if they look healthy and clean. These germs can easily spread to anything in the areas where the poultry live and roam. You can get sick from touching your backyard poultry or anything in their environment and then touching your mouth or food and swallowing salmonella germs.”

Symptoms of salmonella include diarrhea for more than three days, a 102-degree fever, vomiting, and dehydration. The CDC recommends contacting your healthcare provider if you have one or all of the symptoms.

Precautions to take when around them

If you go near with backyard chickens or ducks, the CDC advises:

  • Wash your hands immediately after touching yard fowl or anything in the area where they roam.
  • Don’t snuggle with them.
  • Don’t kiss them.
  • Refrain from eating and drinking around them.

Also, they caution you to prevent children younger than five from touching them. Twenty-three percent of sick people from this outbreak are under five years old.

The CDC provides more information, including safeguards and directions if you think you have salmonella.

When you are in the environment of backyard chickens and ducks, the CDC wants you to take precautions. These safety measures will help protect you and curve the salmonella outbreak.

Do you interact with chickens or ducks?

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