For young children, a trip to a petting zoo is a recreational and educational treat. With the rise in popularity of petting zoos, there’s a potential for the rise of E.coli and salmonella infections, mostly as a result of people not washing their hands.

Taking the simple precautions of washing immediately after visiting a petting zoo and not preparing food with hands that have touched potentially infectious animals can make all the difference.

Dr. Jeanne Ellen Hyrciuk, MD, FCAP, reminds visitors about safeguarding against the hazards of disease-inducing bacteria by carefully supervising children, having people wash their hands after contact with petting zoo animals and looking out for signs of illness such as nausea, stomach cramps, diarrhea or fever.