Outdoor cats are three times more likely to carry infections than indoor cats

Do not let the cat out if you want to remain disease-free, as researchers warn that roaming pets are three times more likely to carry infections

  • They can pick up all kinds of viral and bacterial infections from animals in the wild
  • Many parasites are transferable to humans and can cause flu-like symptoms
  • Kittens in particular must be kept indoors to be protected against pathogens
  • Scientists recommend keeping house cats indoors to reduce infection

If you think it is fun to let your cat play, think again, because it is also likely that you will contract infectious diseases.

Domestic cats that roam freely outside are three times more likely to have an infection that develops into a disease than cats that are indoors only, a study shows.

Such infections include the Toxoplasma Gondii parasite, which can spread to cat owners and is linked to human depression and schizophrenia.

Outdoor cats can also pick up roundworms, which can be passed on to children, causing fever, stomach pain and, in rare cases, seizures.

Researchers discovered that the risk was even higher in countries at higher latitudes due to a higher infection by parasites in animals in the wild.

The authors said that cat owners should not only restrict the movement of domestic cats outdoors to protect their pets, but also animals that they come into contact with.

Kittens in particular should be kept indoors because they are more susceptible to infections, they say.

A study by Auburn University in Alabama has shown that domestic cats that roam outdoors are three times more likely to take up an infection that develops into a disease than just cats (stock image)

A study by Auburn University in Alabama has shown that domestic cats that roam outdoors are three times more likely to take up an infection that develops into a disease than just cats (stock image)

The literature study conducted by Auburn University in Alabama looked at the evidence of 21 other scientific studies to determine the risk of infection in outdoor cats.

They discovered that outdoor cats are 2.77 times more likely than cats that are indoors alone and infected with pathogens, regardless of how the transmission initially took place.

Bacterial or viral infections picked up outside by cats through touch, saliva or from the air probably all developed into pet diseases, the researchers say.

Often these infections have been caught by infected wildlife and these risks were higher at higher latitudes due to higher parasitic infection rates in wildlife.

Owners of a Catt should not only restrict the movement of domestic air to protect their pets, but also wildlife that they come in contact with, experts say. Kittens in particular must be kept indoors because they are more susceptible to infections (stock image)

Owners of a Catt should not only restrict the movement of domestic air to protect their pets, but also wildlife that they come in contact with, experts say. Kittens in particular must be kept indoors because they are more susceptible to infections (stock image)

Owners of a Catt should not only restrict the movement of domestic air to protect their pets, but also wildlife that they come in contact with, experts say. Kittens in particular must be kept indoors because they are more susceptible to infections (stock image)

The researchers wanted to determine whether access outside the home is an important risk factor for parasitic infections in domestic cats in 19 different pathogens.

The researchers say their study supports keeping cats indoors to reduce the risk of transmitting pathogens that affect human, animal and cat health.

The researchers warned about the dangers of outdoor access for domestic cats.

While writing in study, they said: & # 39; Outdoor access is an important risk factor for parasitic infections in pets.

& # 39; Cats are common all over the world, with an estimated 89-90 million in the US alone.

& # 39; Although we do not necessarily advocate restricting all pets indoors, determining the routes and risk factors of transmission related to contact with the environment can be useful for mitigating parasitic infections in pets. 39;

The full findings of the study were published in the journal Biology Letters.

WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON PATHOGENS CAN RECORD CATS?

Toxoplasma gondii

One of the most common parasites in developed countries that can cause mild flu-such as symptoms in people. It is estimated that up to half of the world's population is exposed to the pathogen and may be chronically infected with it.

Toxocara cati

Also known as the feline roundworm, it can infect small mammals such as guinea pigs and the house mouse. It is one of the most common nematodes of cats and infects both wild and domestic cats worldwide.

Adult worms are found in the intestine of the host.

People (mostly children) may occasionally become infected when eating infected cat faeces

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