Proper Hygiene Around Animals

This week’s blog theme is hand washing and proper hygiene to prevent the spread of disease.

Contact with animals has many positive effects for people. We have a puppy. He brings great joy to our family. His floppy ears, waddle, pounce and wagging tail would make anyone smile. I just want to hug him all the time.

My puppy likes to show affection by giving us puppy kisses. Then he’ll lay down with all four paws in the air hoping for a belly rub. He is so cute it is hard not to spoil him with affection.  As a result, I find that I am washing my hands all the time.

When outside, pets will walk through anything. They like to lay on the ground. Everything sticks to their paws & fur. They also clean or groom themselves with their tongues. They may be cute, but if we aren't careful our pets can transmit diseases.

Appropriate hygiene should be practiced at all times after handling animals. To decrease the possibility of contracting a disease, it is essential to wash hands with soap and water after petting, feeding, handling, or having any other contact with animals, their living quarters, or their waste.

When children are playing with animals, parents should discourage:

  • Eating or drinking
  • The use of toys, pacifiers, baby bottles, or spill-proof cups
  • Thumb-sucking and nail-biting
  • Sitting or playing on the ground
  • Feeding the animals, unless the contact is controlled with barriers
  • Any contact with animals if the child has open wounds
  • Contact with any animal waste

Enjoy your pet(s)/animals but remember to practice proper hygiene to stay well. For effective handwashing techniques, check our previous blog.