You need to refrain from cuddling poultry as salmonella has been on the rise in the U.S., warns the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Pet poultry like chicken and ducks are at the center of a recent salmonella outbreak that has already infected 97 people in 28 states, according to the CDC. A third of the sick are kids under the age of five.
The agency warns that even if your domestic poultry seems healthy, it doesn’t mean it is not carrying Salmonella bacteria, which can also inhabit their living environment. Therefore, all non-essential contacts with them should be minimized, warns the CDC, and it is highly recommended to not keep pet poultry inside the house. When tending to the birds, it is best to wear a separate pair of shoes and set of clothes.
The previous Salmonella outbreak happened not so long ago, in September 2019, and it ended up with 1000 infected people across 49 states. Back then, the CDC issued the same advice, asking the owners to not kiss or snuggle chickens and ducklings and to make sure that their kids didn’t do that either.
This year’s salmonella outbreak started back in March, and even though it was overshadowed by the COVID-19 pandemic, 17 people have been hospitalized far, with California and Kentucky being the most affected states.