By Virginia Zombek

(Wampsville, NY – Oct. 2012) If you are a corn maze fanatic, be aware that there only a few weekends left to take advantage of all the outdoor fun these mazes can supply; along with all the mazes, cider and doughnuts there will be many petting zoos for the kids and for the kid in every adult. There might be rabbits, goats, alpacas, peacocks, donkeys and more.

These petting zoos will still be in full swing in early and mid-November.

It is fun to attend these events and enjoy the beautiful colors, local foods and the like. To make sure that people are safe from any type of animal or food-borne bacteria, the Madison County Department of Health staff reviews proper healthy, sanitation procedures with the owners and managers of these agri-business events for the safety of all.

Children should never eat after they have been around animals without first washing or sanitizing their hands. Watch toddlers carefully, as their first action is to taste whatever is on their fingers.

While at the event, adults can protect their youngsters with some healthy strategies to remain germ-free: bring along your own hand-sanitizing gel and look for hand-washing stations wherever pets can be touched. It is not just the animals that can transfer germs, it can also be the dirt and animal bedding that is on the ground, water puddles near pet cages, the wire fencing that keeps them in and anything else that another person has touched.

Children must wash their hands in running water if their hands are actually soiled. Hand sanitizers should not be used in place of a good lathering with soap and water, if it is available.

Enjoy the fun fall events in our area safely and stay healthy with these tips. For more information regarding hand-washing safety, visit www.healthymadisoncounty.org, Health Information, Hand Washing Guide or call us at 315.366.2361.

By martha

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