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Zoonotic Diseases


It's Chick Season! Wash Your Hands So You Don't Get Sick!

baby birds

Reduce the risk of human Salmonella Infections from live baby poultry.

Live poultry, such as chicks, ducklings, goslings, baby turkeys, and adult birds can spread Salmonella infection. Children may be exposed to Salmonella by holding, cuddling, or kissing the birds and by touching items where the bird lives, such as cages, feed or water bowls. Young children are especially at risk for illness because their immune systems are still developing and because they are more likely than others to put their fingers or other items into their mouths.


Downloadable Educational Information:


Don’t Play Chicken with Your Health


After You Touch Ducklings or Chicks,

Wash Your Hands So You Don’t Get Sick!


Stay Healthy When Working With Farm Animals


More information available at: CDC's Salmonella and Baby Birds Page and
CDC's Animal Exhibits Page



Do You Have Worms?

Your animals, especially kittens and puppies may be carrying worms. Guess what? These could be passed to you or your children!


What is Visceral Larval Migrans?

It is a condition in children caused by migratory larvae of nematodes (Roundworms) like those found in the intestines of cats and dogs. Since these worms can't reproduce in humans, they wander throughout the body, invading the heart, the nervous system, and the eye (which can result in blindness - Ocular Larval Migrans).


Species most likely for infection are; Toxacara canis and T.vitulloram (Dog and Cat Roundworm).


Ocular larval migrans common roundworm found in dogs and cats

ocular larval migrans


common roundworm


Lifecycle of Toxacaratoxacara lifecycle


How can I get worms?

Worms can be transmitted by playing with animals and not washing hands well afterwards. Transmission can also occur by walking around barefoot in areas where animals have defecated or soiled. (Hookworms)



How do I get rid of worms if I have them?

The best treatment is prevention. But if infestation should occur treatment with medicines to get rid of the worms is available called anthelmentics). Contact your family doctor.


How can I prevent worm infestation?
  • Always perform good hand hygiene. That means washing with soap and warm water for at least 30 seconds.
  • If you do not have soap and water available, use an alcohol-based hand cleaner or wipes.
  • Do not let children walk around barefoot where animals have soiled. Remove and dispose of animal waste properly.



Helpful Pet Tips

  • Have your animals routinely checked by a Veterinarian for parasites
  • Have them routinely vaccinated
  • Immediately remove pet waste from your yard as a prevention of infestation
  • Avoid contact with wild animals
  • Do not allow children to play where animals soil
  • Be particularly careful when visiting farms, petting zoos, or fair


For more information, contact the Regional Epidemiologist at the Laurel County Health Department.