The CDC advises that you wash your hands after dressing up your pet chicken and that you make sure your bird is comfortable in its costume

By Kelli Bender
October 25, 2018 01:46 PM
Credit: Getty Images

All the celebrity farmers can breathe a sigh of relief.

Recent reports claimed the Centers for Disease Control released a warning advising chicken owners not to dress their birds up for Halloween.

Turns out, the CDC didn’t suggest a specific ban against festive chickens, but instead issued a guide on how to safely keep and care for backyard poultry — a growing trend among animal lovers.

In the guide, the CDC notes that keeping pet chickens can be “a great experience” for a family, but there are some dangers involved — namely the spread of Salmonella.

To prevent the spread of Salmonella germs, which humans can pick up from handling chickens or from handling their “cages, coops, feed and water dishes, hay, plants, and soil in the area where the birds live and roam,” the CDC has a list of tips. They include not snuggling or kissing your chickens, washing your hands after coming in contact with your chickens and their surroundings and not eating or drinking near your chicken coop.

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What’s missing is any warning against dressing your chickens up for Halloween. Instead, Benjamin Haynes, a CDC spokesperson, told Live Science that you should go ahead and dress up your chickens — just make sure to wash your hands after putting your pet in costume, and wash the costume in hot water after your bird is done celebrating.

It is important to keep the chicken’s well-being in mind, as well. Make sure your chicken is comfortable in his costume before leaving him in it for the night.

To read the CDC’s full guide to how to care for your chickens while also keeping you and your family safe from Salmonella, visit the department’s website.