Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Toxoplasmosis passed to kittens?
Today in lecture, someone asked a question about whether a cat infected with toxoplasmosis can/will pass the disease along to its kittens...here are some things a veterinary site I found had to say about the subject:
- Once cats become infected with Toxo they will always have it, but they will only pass it in the stool for a brief time just after they are first infected. Most cats only pass the organism in the stool ONCE in their lives and usually when they are kittens. The exception to this would be if an older cat got another disease that suppressed their immune system (such as feline leukemia or feline aids).
- How do we prevent this? That is a tough problem. Many folks recommend getting rid of your barn cats. The problem is that stray cats passing through your barn or pasture can also shed the organism. Other people have advocated having a few, neutered barn cats. These cats are not going to be having kittens (the age most likely to shed the parasite) and they are going to hopefully chase off any stray cats that come around. The most successful method of preventing this is to keep the feed and the hay in areas where cats cannot get to it...and practice good hygiene!