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Salmonella in Chicks

Baby chickens may look cute, but there is a hidden risk.
MIDLAND, TX (Big 2 News)-With this holiday weekend upon us, health experts have a warning for you.
Many purchase cute little chicks to celebrate the season, but officials warn the little baby animals can harbor Salmonella.

"Salmonella is actually present in all animals," Adam Vree of A to Z Veterinarians says.

Salmonella may lead to fever and diarrhea in humans, which is not a fun thought for Easter weekend.

"You get it into our hands, and then if we say eat something or sneeze, and we do something, and it could transfer the salmonella to us and we could get sick," continued Adam.

But Janis Ortiz at Circle P Ranch Supply in Odessa tells me you can prevent salmonella.

"We haven't had any kind of salmonella outbreak. As long as they keep their area clean...and disinfected like we do...every batch that we get we disinfect and clean, you shouldn't have a problem," says Ortiz. 

There are plenty of redeeming aspects to buying chicks.

"Honestly, chickens are great, great for egg laying, good for insect control, just all around, teaches kids responsibilities," explained Ortiz. 

Vree says one simple step can prevent salmonella contamination.

"For those of you who are handling baby chicks, you would want to wash your hands really well," Vree recommends. 

The Centers For Disease Control (CDC) has more information on their website about avoiding Salmonella from young chickens. You can visit that page here: http://www.cdc.gov/Features/SalmonellaBabyBirds/ 

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