Around the Barnyard: Farm Animals & Your Health

For many children, visiting a farm with family or school is a right of passage. Farms provide the real-life experience of hearing the “mooooos” and “baaahhhs” children imitate from books and songs. Sometimes, visitors can pet friendly farm animals, enriching their understanding of the world’s creatures and where food comes from.

Despite the many benefits of interacting with farm animals, people should be aware that farm animals can carry germs that make people sick.

Diseases that pass from animals to humans are called zoonotic diseases. These diseases can cause a variety of illnesses, from minor skin rashes to serious infections, which is why those who visit farms should take steps to keep themselves and the animals they meet healthy.

Learn more from the CDC