We were at the feed store getting shavings and ogling the chicks (we have ours already, but man were they tempting!) when I read a sign about 'precautions' around poultry. They seem sorta crazy to me...but then again I think of life in general as rather low risk compared to others. The chickens should not be kissed/put near your face etc. Thought I'd check in for some opinions. Have healthy preschool aged kids and DH and I have no health concerns. What really is the risk of handling poop/chick dust? I put our chicks on old, but still in circulation towels (beach towels and ones we use for wiping off the dog feet) and we also put them on old sheets (that may or may not someday be put on a bed. They are just not my 'good' ones) when we let them out to play in the living room. I just wash these in my washing machine and call it good. A little tea tree oil in the wash and vinegar in the rinse. Good enough? Or so gross we should burn the towels? We all wash our hands when we hold the chicks or work with them, but that is the extent of it. I shake off the poop to the best of my ability before things go in the wash. Unrelated question....I can't seem to get a real time line on how long I should expect these little guys to be in the house. We just had a new foot of snow and temps are still regularly dropping to the teens at night, daytime highs are in the 20's. What is the criteria for them being out/in coop for both daytime and overnight? Daytime temps for 4-5 weeks? Overnight temps for after that age? Can I expect to keep them in a large breed dog crate for the duration of their stay indoors? If temps are adequate and they can get some (protected by wire) lawn time during the day at 4-6 weeks and be in the crate for evening/ night will it last? We have 4 chicks. Thanks! ~L.