Texas, There’s an Infectious Outbreak Coming From Our Backyards
It seems like only yesterday we were dealing with the COVID Pandemic; now it seems like there's another outbreak happening in the United States. A salmonella outbreak that's effecting over 600 people throughout 47 states; one of the worst being Texas. The locations haven't been published but we do know that at least a total of 25 people have been infected.
What's causing the salmonella outbreak in Texas?
According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention; the salmonella outbreak seems to have arise from backyard poultry. You know...chickens.
It started earlier this year in May but it spread across the country. As of September 2023, the salmonella outbreak is still listed as "ACTIVE" so it's still out there.
The CDC has advised the public that while chickens & ducks may look healthy and clean, they could be carrying salmonella germs. You can get very sick by touching your backyard poultry or anything that THEY may have touched. And of course that also can spread if you touch your mouth or eat any food & swallowing the germs.
How can people prevent from getting sick?
The CDC has listed steps on what to do to keep you & everyone from getting sick:
- Wash your hands: Always use soap & water after touching your poultry, the eggs or anything in the area they were just at. Hand sanitizer works effectively too.
- Be safe around your backyard flocks: While they may be cute to kiss or play with, it's advised that you don't. Don't eat or drink around them & make sure your flocks are cleaned & cared for.
- Watch your kids around flocks: Any children that are 5 years old or younger should stay away from poultry flocks as they are very likely to get sick from Salmonella germs. Make sure they wash their hands properly if they touched any chickens or ducks.
- Handle eggs safely: Collect eggs regularly, discard any damaged or cracked eggs, and make sure that any healthy eggs are refrigerated & stored properly.
- And most importantly, call your healthcare provider if someone is experiencing symptoms: a fever of 102 degrees, diarrhea that lasts for 3 days (bloody is especially a sign to look for), vomiting, & signs of dehydration.
If you own a backyard poultry store or run a poultry hatchery, there's additional information regarding on how to reduce the spread of salmonella on the CDC website here.