How Serious a Threat is Salmonella

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by fowlplay, Apr 17, 2008.

  1. fowlplay

    fowlplay In the Brooder

    Feb 25, 2008
    Hey everyone,
    I was checking out Tractors Supply's website and they had a section about raising baby chicks. They expressed a serious concern over salmonella which truth be told, scared me a bit.
    For example, this is some of what they were saying: that you should always keep your poultry outside and never handle their poo without gloves on and to also be very careful with children around the chicks and make sure they wash their hands after handling and so on and so on.
    I've read numerous posts where people have their chickens actually live indoors with them.
    Is Salmonella really that much of a concern or is it simply a matter of common sense, clean practices?
  2. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    I don't know all the answers, but I think Salmonella is a germ that is ever-present in chickens.

    I just wash up after handling the chicks or cleaning their brooder and I told the kids not to kiss the chicks 'cause of germs and to wash their hands after every time they hold a chick.

    If you search "Salmonella" in the forums, you'll probably have all your questions answered.
  3. mullers3acers

    mullers3acers Songster

    Oct 9, 2007
    la porte, In
    Washing after handling and cleaning after you are with your chickens is a great precation. But my family and I have been raising chickens for about 8 years and have'nt had a problem. [​IMG]
  4. Guitartists

    Guitartists Resistance is futile

    Mar 21, 2008
    You have to worry about it with pet lizards, turtles and other small animals. IMHO I've grown up with a menagerie of animals and I used to kiss wild frogs, pet turtles, snakes and birds when I was young... I'm still here and have never been overly ill. From what I understand though, everybody's system handles it differently and what might not make one person sick could really hurt another. Maybe I have a higher resistance because of all that early on animal kissing.. [​IMG] ... or maybe I have just been lucky!

    Washing hands is never a bad idea regardless. [​IMG]
  5. tvtaber

    tvtaber Songster

    Aug 2, 2007
    Central CA
    I have my small kids wash their hands every time they touch chicks, hens, goats dogs, the carpet, a ball, their nose... Every article and brief I ever saw on contageous diseases lists this as the most important precaution. However, how you stop a kid (or a 40-yr old mom) from kissing a chick is beyond me. I wouldn't even try. I would bet the feed store posts that info for legal reasons more than anything else.

    Use your common sense and you'll be fine.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2008
  6. GwenFarms

    GwenFarms Songster

    Feb 26, 2008
    Well, I have been around chickens for ...hmmmm ...about 35 years and only once had salmonella poisoning and then it came out of a commercial barn that housed 10,000 chickens. So, I think your pretty safe. The one time I did have it I was the sickest I've ever been and ended up hospitalized. I literally thought I was going to die. Don't wear the shoes back in the house, or car that you wear in the chicken coop/run. Always wash your hands after handling your chickens and eggs. Basically, just use common sense. Realize the slight possiblility is there and act accordingly.

    As far as the chicken kissing thing...thats not the end you have to worry about so much with salmonella...its usually the other end [​IMG]
  7. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    I actually had Salmonella once when I was kid. For a long time we had our chickens and used their eggs. Then we stopped keeping chickens and bought the yucky factory farm eggs. That's when I got sick. We got our own chickens again and didn't have any more problems.
  8. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    With common sense, it shouldn't be a problem. I think your risk of salmonella from commercial/prepackaged/prepared foods is much higher. Of course.. I do lack common sense at times, forget to wash hands, eat with the chickens and eat things off the floor after the birds have wandered my room... maybe it has just been a lucky decade with chickens?
  9. 1/2DozenWings

    1/2DozenWings In the Brooder

    Oct 12, 2009
    Butler county
    Does anyone who sells their hens' eggs regularly test the hens for Salmonella? It's a blood test, so I assume it looks for antibodies to Salmonella organisms, not the organisms themselves.

    I was told that, in order to sell eggs, I "should" have my hens tested once or twice annually.

    I don't want to go knocking on the door of my local USDA office if I can help it....

    Please help??
  10. Uzuri

    Uzuri Songster

    Mar 25, 2009
    In the last 7 months I've had chicken crap and dirty bedding kicked directly in my face on more occasions than I care to count. I keep chugging along.

    Of course, I've eaten raw eggs since I was a little kid, too so maybe I've built an immunity. As everyone has said, the big thing is to wash hands after handling the chicks.

    Mom was extremely disgusted with me when I told her she had more to worry about with the wild birds crapping all over her garden plants than my chickens [​IMG] It's one of those things you don't want to think about.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: