Animal Contact in Public Settings

Zoonotic pathogens associated with animals can be transmitted by direct or indirect animal contact in a variety of public and private settings. Pets (including non-traditional pets such as rodents, backyard poultry, and reptiles), agricultural species, and feeder animals can all spread disease-causing organisms to people.

There are many types of diseases, injuries, and other health risks that can be associated with contact with animals in public settings such as fairs, schools, petting zoos, photo opportunities, farm tours, etc. Disease exposures can also occur in the home or in various parts of the pet industry.

Appropriate precautions can reduce these risks while still allowing persons the benefits of owning, seeing, and interacting with animals.