RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — A Tennessee mom has a warning for other parents following an E. coli outbreak at one of the state’s most popular petting zoos and pumpkin patches. The mom said on social media that her child was hospitalized for eight days after attending summer camp at Lucky Ladd in June and that she had to be hospitalized as well.

News 2 obtained a report from the Tennessee Department of Health that shows an investigation into more than a dozen cases linked to the outbreak at Lucky Ladd Farms in Rutherford County, including the death of a 2-year-old.

The farm, ranked as one of the top spots for kids, promotes the largest petting farm in the state, but according to TDH, it was two of their baby goats that are likely to blame for the deadly E. coli outbreak over the summer.

Lawyer Bill Marler said he is representing three children who attended summer camp at the farm in June and were sickened by the bacteria as well as the toddler who died.

“The E. coli bacteria eats away at the intestinal wall and a toxin is taken into the body which splits the red blood cells, which clogs the kidney, the brain, the liver and eventually can cause death and that’s what happened here,” Marler explained calling it a tragedy.

Lucky Ladd officials posted on social media Tuesday sending prayers to everyone affected by the outcome and explaining some of the steps and changes since they were made aware, including euthanizing the two goats.

“They tried to remove the most likely risk, and I think that’s a good thing but again, you know, cows can carry it, sheep can carry it, pigs can carry it,” he went on, saying the deadly bacteria is in the environment.

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Marler urges parents, venues and state health departments to do a better job at educating and protecting children from the bacteria especially those under the age of 10 who are more vulnerable.

“The petting zoo, although did have some of the requirements to protect kids from these bacterial infections, really didn’t have all of the ones that many petting zoos and county fairs have been utilizing in the last decade. We just need to do a far better job of protecting these kids, and frankly, this facility did some of these things but not nearly enough or we wouldn’t be talking about it right now.”

Marler says he would limit contact between children and small animals altogether.

“If you want them to have that experience, you know, make sure you watch where they are, what they are doing. Don’t let your kid eat while they are there, make sure they wash their hands,” Marler said.

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News 2 reached out to Lucky Ladd Farms for a statement on the issue. It reads, in part:

“Our family and staff continue to offer our prayers and heartfelt condolences to everyone affected by the very sad outcome that occurred in June. We thank the Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) for their very professional and thorough investigation. We also thank all the Foodborne and Enteric Diseases (FED) Program staff for their investigatory efforts as well as each member of our local community for their continued support for everyone involved.”

Jason and Amy Ladd

You can read the full statement by clicking here.