9 E. coli cases linked to petting zoo at Rice County Fair - My29 WFTC Minneapolis-St. Paul

9 E. coli cases linked to petting zoo at Rice County Fair

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Electron micrograph of E. coli bacteria (NIAID) Electron micrograph of E. coli bacteria (NIAID)

The petting zoo at the Rice County Fair has been shut down after the Minnesota Department of Health confirmed that several cases of E. coli had been tracked there; however, they say there is no risk to the public now.

So far, 9 cases of E. coli have been confirmed, and 5 people have been hospitalized. Those who were affected by the bacteria range in age from 2 to 35, but no information has been provided about the individual patients or their condition.

A majority of the illnesses were linked to the Rice County Fair, and it's not the only place facing E. coli concerns this summer. Minneapolis park officials closed Thomas Beach on Lake Calhoun for a second time after tests indicated elevated levels of E. coli on Tuesday.

MORE: Minneapolis beaches closed over E. coli

The symptoms of E. coli tend to include stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Symptoms typically begin to emerge 3 or 4 days after a patient has been exposed to the bacteria; however, symptoms can also set in as quickly as one day, according to the Mayo Clinic. Most patients will recover on their own, but dehydration can be a big concern. Health professionals urge anyone who has persistent, severe or bloody diarrhea to contact a physician.

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