Baby chicks may be cute and cuddly, but they can spread some diseases that can make you very sick if you're not careful. Deschutes County Environmental Health spokesman Eric Mone says 8,000 to 10,000 chicks are bought every year in Deschutes County and they get numerous reports of people getting sick after handling them.
"Understand that these animals can carry pretty virulent bacteria that can cause anything from a mild illness to hospitalization or worse, so we're just trying to raise awareness about some of the infections that these chicks and different animals can carry."
Mone says the best way to stay healthy is to wash your hands with warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds after handling the chicks or cleaning up after the animal pens. And children under 5 years old or people with a compromised immune system should not handle them at all.