Happy Easter: Watch Out for Salmonella

Easter is a time to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, eat chocolate bunnies, and of course, nuzzle baby chicks and ducks. But as adorable as fuzzy little birds are, the CDC warns that these animals are deceptively dangerous.

Yes, in a perfect world, we could play with baby chicks and ducks to our hearts' content, but that's just not a good idea.

The cute little birds can carry salmonella and each year send dozens of children to the doctor's office. Last year 68 people got salmonella in 20 states from handling baby chicks and ducklings, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Almost a third were under age 6.

Way to ruin Easter, CDC. I mean, it's certainly important to know the risks of handling baby chicks, but it's hard to believe something so precious could cause serious health problems.

While there have been no deaths linked to salmonella poisoning from handling live poultry, the infection is still mighty unpleasant — symptoms include diarrhea, cramps, and fever. To some, that's a small price to pay for getting to pet a tiny animal. For others, it's reason enough to stay away.

Either way, baby chicks and ducks aren't cats and dogs, as the CDC's Casey Barton Bahravesh reminds us.

We definitely don't recommend getting chicks for Easter gifts if they're not going to be a part of a backyard flock. These are farm animals, they're not pets.

Oh, well. At least Peeps are relatively harmless.

[Image via Flickr/KRO-Media]