Staying Safe During Your Visit

Visiting a farm like Brockswood can be an enjoyable and educational experience for many people, especially children! However, such visits can never be completely free from all risks, and even healthy and well cared for farm animals may harbour infections such as E-coli 0157. Following the simple guidelines listed below will help to make your visit a safe one for both you and your children.

 
Sansa and Co

Simple Rules for a Safe Visit

We take great care to ensure that all the animals you come into contact with are both healthy and are happy with the attention they get from our visitors. The following guidelines will help you to have a safe and enjoyable animal experience.


  • Children under 5 years will probably have hands that are too small for direct feeding of the animals and therefore caution and discretion should be exercised by the parents and/or guardians of the under 5's.

  • When directly feeding the animals keep your hand completely flat. If you let your fingers curl upwards or your thumb is not flat to the side of your hand then the animals may accidentally catch your fingers or thumb with their teeth. Although the animals we allow you to feed would not do this deliberately, it can still be a little painful should it happen accidentally!

  • When petting the animals, ensure that they can see your hands do not contain food for them, otherwise, they may assume they are being fed and try to take food that’s not there.

  • Always pet animals at the fence and allow them to come to you. Never reach out to them, lean over the fence or put your arm through the fence to reach them as this has the potential to spook them as they may interpret these gestures as a threat - remember, our animals have been rescued and may have experienced abuse before they came to us.

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after you have touched the animals, fences or any other surfaces around the animal enclosures.​​


Should you have questions or concerns please ask a member of staff for help, or feel free to get in touch before your visit.

 

COVID-19

Animals can catch SARS-CoV-2. This is the virus that causes COVID-19. It is rare, and they may show only mild clinical signs and recover within a few days. The virus has now been found in companion animals, zoo animals and in a considerable number of mink farms in several countries around the world.


We are following the recommended guidelines provided by the Government, Local Authority, World Health Organisation (WHO), and various relevant animal-related organisations such as the British and Irish Association of Zoos & Aquariums (BIAZA), as well as our Vets.


Our Animal Keepers are taking every precaution to safeguard our animals, and appropriate biosecurity measures are in place, as always.

Our animal care team continue to ensure that all animals at the sanctuary receive the same care, love, and attention that they are used to receiving all year round.


Animal fur can act as a carrier (fomite transmission) for the COVID-19 virus for short periods of time, in the same way as other surfaces.

General Hygiene

  • Do not use gels or wipes instead of washing hands with soap and water. Gels and wipes do not remove E-coli 0157 in dirt.

  • Do not put hands on faces or fingers in your mouth while petting animals, feeding animals, or walking around the farm.

  • Do not kiss animals or allow children to put their faces close to the animals.

  • Do not eat, drink or smoke while touching/feeding animals or walking around the farm. This includes not eating sweets, crisps or chewing gum.

  • Do not eat anything that has fallen on the floor.

  • Do wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after you have touched the animals, fences or any other surfaces around the animal enclosures.

  • Do wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before eating and drinking.

  • Do remove boots or shoes that might have become soiled and then wash hands thoroughly with soap and water when finished.

  • Do supervise children closely to ensure they adhere to these rules.

  • Do eat and drink in the picnic area and café only.

Petting & Feeding the Animals

We take great care to ensure that all the animal you come into contact with are both healthy and are happy with the attention they get from the public. The following guidelines will help you to have a safe and enjoyable animal experience.


  • Children under 5 years will probably have hands that are too small for direct feeding of the animals and therefore caution and discretion should be exercised by the parents and/or guardians of the under 5's.

  • When directly feeding the animals keep your hand completely flat. If you let your fingers curl upwards or your thumb is not flat to the side of your hand then the animals may accidentally catch your fingers or thumb with their teeth. Although the animals we allow you to feed would not do this deliberately, it can still be a little painful should it happen accidentally.

  • When petting the animals ensure that they can see your hands do not contain food for them, otherwise they may assume they are being fed and try to take food that’s not there.

  • Always pet animals at the fence and allow them to come to you. Never reach out to them, lean over the fence or put your arm through the fence to reach them as this has the potential to spook them as they may interpret these gestures as a threat.

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after you have touched the animals, fences or any other surfaces around the animal enclosures.​​


Should you have questions or concerns please ask a member of staff for help.