WILMINGTON — Despite some heavy showers and storms, high humidity and confirmation of swine flu at the hog barn, the show mostly went on as scheduled Thursday at the 2017 Clinton County Fair.
The hog barn was shut down by state officials around lunchtime Thursday.
However, the Junior Fair Market Hog Show, one of the biggest of the fair, continued for exhibitors and parents only, according to Clinton County Agricultural Society Board Member Greta Gray.
An Ohio Department of Agriculture veterinarian, Dr. Robert Carey, DVM, said mid-afternoon Thursday there was one confirmed case of swine flu at the hog barn on the fairgrounds.
Carey said he planned to do more testing on hogs there Thursday afternoon, and said staff from The Ohio State University were coming down Thursday “to swab a bunch of them.”
The reason the part of the poultry barn where poultry are kept was also roped off Thursday to fair-goers, said Carey, is because officials wanted to exercise caution since the virus can get into poultry, mutate and become a more serious problem.
Once word got out on Facebook about the hog barn shutdown, women at the Senior Fair Office fielded phone calls about the matter.
Fair-goer Karen Gibson said, “It’s sad for the kids.”
Gray said the gates remained open Thursday at the fair. Rides on the midway that were not affected by the day’s rain continued to operate; however, the Truck Pull 4WD scheduled for Thursday evening was cancelled due to the wet conditions.
Friday’s schedule includes the 4-H/FFA Olympics at 2 p.m., the Clinton County Fair Honoree presentation at 7 p.m., the Tractor and Semi Pull at 7 p.m. and featured entertainer Alyssa Oeder takes the Kroger Sound Stage at 8 p.m.
The day also includes Baked Goods Judging at 10 a.m. and the Baked Goods Auction at 4 p.m.
The midway opens at 1 p.m.
About swine flu
Swine flu, like any flu virus, can be spread, although rare, from pigs to people, according to the Clinton County Health Department.
“Spread of swine flu viruses from pig to people is thought to happen the same way that human flu viruses are spread; mainly through droplets when infected pigs cough or sneeze,” stated a press release from the health department early Thursday evening.
What to do if you get sick:
• Flu symptoms usually include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue, and sometimes vomiting or diarrhea.
• If you are at high risk and you get the flu symptoms, call your health care provider. Tell them about your high risk factors and your symptoms. If you have had recent exposure to pigs, tell them that too.
• If you are not at high risk and you get flu symptoms after exposure to pigs, seek medical care as you normally would.
• A health care provider can decide whether influenza testing or treatment is needed.
• These drugs work better the sooner you start them, so seek medical treatment promptly if you get symptoms and are at high risk.
“If you have been in contact with swine and are experiencing signs and symptoms of flu-like illness, please consult your medical provider,” said Dr. Terry Holten, Clinton County Health District Medical Director. “Especially if you are high risk which includes children under 5 years, those with long term health conditions, like asthma and other lung diseases, diabetes, heart disease, weakened immune systems, as well as pregnant women and people 65 years and older.”
The Clinton County Fair remains open to the public.
As with any pet or livestock contact, visitors should continue to wash their hands after petting animals and before eating. Sanitizer stations are available throughout the Clinton County Fairgrounds.