A small routine at the Jackson County Fair can go a long way in keeping you and your family safe, local health officials say.
"Just make sure you wash your hands," said Lin Montgomery, public health coordinator for the Jackson County Health Department.
While the fair provides an opportunity to view farm animals up close, it also creates the potential to contract animal-related illnesses.
The best way to prevent those conditions is to wash your hands when you leave barns, even if you haven’t pet animals, and when you return home.
The fair has multiple handwashing stations throughout the grounds and multiple restrooms.
"It’s an important thing for people to do and make sure they practice good hygiene," Montgomery said.
Parents also should keep an eye on young children who will not only touch animals but their pins. Parents also should make sure children do not put anything in their mouths.
"Kids will be kids, but I have seen where they have put their mouths on the fencing while looking at animals," Montgomery said. "Not a good idea."
The department has placed signs throughout the barns to raise awareness and to ensure people are reminded to wash their hands as they exit the barns and fair.