How to Prevent Salmonella Outbreaks in Backyard Flocks

If you have a backyard flock of chickens, it’s important to be aware of the risk factors associated with salmonella outbreaks. Salmonella is a genus of dangerous bacteria that can spread through a flock of chickens via rodent droppings, and then be transmitted to humans if poultry or eggs are not properly prepared. Humans can also contract salmonella poisoning from chickens if they handle chickens and then put their hands into or near their mouths after touching them.

Salmonella infections are fairly rare in small backyard flocks, but that doesn’t mean you should disregard the risk of an outbreak. Fortunately, there are some simple steps you can take to prevent a salmonella outbreak in your chicks on green grass

Caring for Your Chickens

Purchase chicks from trustworthy sources.

When you purchase chicks, the last thing you want to do is purchase ones that might already have salmonella. The best way to avoid this is by working directly with reputable chick sellers that have strict health and safety standards. At Chickens for Backyards, we take pride in our ability to sell chicks that are healthy and free of disease.

Feed your chickens properly to keep their immune systems strong

If your chickens are ever exposed to salmonella, you want their immune systems to be able to deal with it effectively. If you don’t give your chickens the right kind of feed, or don’t give them enough food and water, their immune systems can become too weak to combat illnesses. By providing your birds with balanced, nutrient-rich feed and plenty of water, you can keep them healthy enough to fight off disease on their own.

Keep your flock’s living quarters clean

If your flock’s living quarters aren’t clean, you are essentially inviting salmonella and other diseases into their coop. You should make every effort to keep your chicken coop free of rodents since they can transmit all kinds of disease through their droppings. You should also clean out your coop regularly to keep it as hygienic and sanitary as possible.

Caring for Yourself

Wash your hands

Always wash your hands after handling your chickens to prevent salmonella from spreading to you and your family. Wash with soap and warm water, and consider having a bottle of hand sanitizer by your coop.

Keep supplies out of the house

Any supplies you use to care for your chickens (including boots and other clothing items that you wear) should be kept outside of the house. Have a place to store it either in a shed or in your garage, and always be sure to clean them regularly.

Be careful of how you interact with your chickens

Chickens are adorable, but you’ll need to exhibit some self-control to prevent a salmonella outbreak from spreading to you and your family. This means neither kissing nor snuggling with the chickens in your flock, as this can spread Salmonella germs to your mouth. You should also not eat or drink around your chickens for the very same reason.

Handle eggs carefully

Eggs can also carry Salmonella germs, so be careful on how you handle them. Throw away any cracked eggs and clean off dirt either with water or the dry cleaning method. If you wash them with water, just be sure you’re not using cold water as this can pull bacteria into the egg. Then, place them in the refrigerator to keep germs at bay.

Looking for healthy chicks to add to your flock? At Chickens for Backyards, you can find all your favorite breeds and the supplies you need to raise and care for them in the future. Give us a call today at our toll-free number to learn more.