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McHenry County Department of Health: Take these precautions at petting zoos

The McHenry County Department of Health would like to remind residents the risk of getting gastrointestinal illnesses – such as salmonella, campylobacter and E. coli – from petting zoos.

The illnesses can cause diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal pain, according to a release from the department.

The health department encourages residents who are out and about this summer at county fairs and petting zoos to always make sure to wash their hands after being around animals or petting them, keep food and drink out of animal areas and do not share food with animals.

Children younger than 5 should be supervised in animal areas. Do not allow children to put fingers or objects in their mouth when around animals and do not take strollers, bottles, pacifiers, cups or toys into animal areas, the release stated.

For information visit www.cdc.gov/features/animalexhibits.

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