Hand washing crucial when in contact with animals

Washing hands helps decrease the chances of getting sick.
Reese Coyle, of Superior, washes off his horse, Apryl Surprise, at the Head of the Lakes Fair in Superior in 2018. (Jed Carlson /

The Head of the Lakes Fair in Superior opens Tuesday, July 16, and the Douglas County Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Unit reminds everyone of the importance of washing hands after coming in contact with animals.

Any time an adult or child comes in contact with animals or their environment, washing hands is the best way to stay healthy.

Hands should be washed:

  • After touching animals or their living area.

  • After leaving the animal area.

  • After taking off clothes or shoes that were worn in areas where animals were present.

  • After going to the bathroom.

  • Before preparing food.

  • Before eating or drinking.

  • Any other time your hands may have picked up germs.

Washing hands is a quick and effective way to decrease chances of getting sick. There are five steps to washing hands:

  • Wet your hands with clean running water, turn off the tap and apply soap.
  • Lather hands by rubbing them together; be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between fingers and under nails.
  • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.
  • Rinse hands well under clean, running water.
  • Dry hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

If handwashing isn't available, using hand sanitizer is the next best thing.

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