Toxoplasmosis (Toxoplasmosis) - natural focal anthropozoonosis disease caused by the simplest intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii.
The causative agent of toxoplasmosis was discovered in 1908 by French microbiologists S. Nicole and L. Manso in rodents.
Today, toxoplasmosis is widespread throughout the world. Almost half of all mammals and up to 60% of people are carriers of this disease.
How are cats infected with toxoplasmosis?
Infection with cat toxoplasmosis occurs when eating infected mice, feeding raw meat products from an animal suffering from toxoplasmosis, food, inseminated with this parasite, water, etc.
After ingestion of a cat, Toxoplasma is divided into two groups. The first group of Toxoplasma is localized in the small intestine, where it multiplies, forming cysts, which are later excreted by the cat with faeces. Therefore, the owner of the cat removing the stale feces from the tray has a real opportunity to become infected with toxoplasmosis. The process of isolating cysts lasts about three weeks from the moment of infection of the cat. After this period, animal feces cease to be a source of toxoplasmosis. Another group of Toxoplasma at the same time penetrates through the intestinal walls into the blood-forming organs (spleen and red bone marrow), multiplies there and enters the bloodstream, spreads throughout the body, infecting the cells of internal organs and destroying them, leading to serious violations of the organs and cat body systems.
Sometimes, under the influence of the body's defenses, movement and reproduction of Toxoplasma is inhibited or completely stopped. In this case, the Toxoplasma are trapped in intracellular cysts. In such a state, they can remain for an indefinitely long time, due to which toxoplasmosis in a cat often proceeds without any clinical signs of the disease.
Which cats are most susceptible to toxoplasmosis?
The probability of getting sick with toxoplasmosis is most susceptible to cats younger than 1 year and older than 6-7 years, due to the fact that this group of animals usually does not have sufficiently strong immunity. Additionally, the risk group includes:
- Cats that the owners feed raw meat (a large percentage of meat sold through trade contains Toxoplasma cysts).
- Cats walking freely (have the opportunity to catch a mouse).
- Sick and weakened cats due to a weak immune response.
- Cats kept by the owners in adverse conditions.
Symptoms of toxoplasmosis in cats
The incubation period for toxoplasmosis usually occurs within a few weeks. Typically, a cat's toxoplasmosis causes a short deterioration in the health of the animal — a cat's runny nose, a cat's conjunctivitis, a cat's vomiting, and one-time diarrhea (cat's diarrhea). Cat owners usually take similar symptoms for poisoning or a cold. Later, after 2-3 days, the symptoms of malaise in the cat go away and the toxoplasmosis goes into a latent, and later on, a chronic form. A healthy cat, due to its immunity, does not allow toxoplasma to multiply actively, walling them in the cells, as a result of which the cat ceases to be infectious and does not react to anything in the body of toxoplasma, unless it is again infected with toxoplasmosis.
Sometimes a cat's toxoplasmosis can occur in an acute or subacute form. In the acute form of the disease, the cat becomes lethargic, refuses to eat, there is a high body temperature, coughing, sneezing, runny nose, lacrimation, shortness of breath, and wheezing. With the involvement of the cat in the pathological process of the nervous system convulsions, muscle tremor, twitching, in severe cases - paralysis. Sometimes there is a violation in the gastrointestinal tract (vomiting, diarrhea, constipation). With liver damage - icteric staining of the visible mucous membranes.
Subacute toxoplasmosis is accompanied by the same clinical symptoms as acute, only the symptoms of the disease are not so pronounced. We note a slight increase in body temperature, the cat develops a cough, sneezing, shortness of breath, breathing becomes wheezing, purulent discharges are visible from the eyes.
Forecast with toxoplasmosis in acute and subacute form depends on the timeliness of the treatment started and its effectiveness.
Diagnostics. Diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in a cat should be carried out by the veterinarian of the clinic. By conducting a serological reaction to the presence of the parasite, cytological examination of PCR has been particularly effective recently. To detect toxoplasma in a cat in a veterinary laboratory in a cat by examining the feces for toxoplasma. But this can be done only for 2-3 weeks.
Treatment. Treatment of toxoplasmosis in cats should be carried out by doctors of the veterinary clinic. The most common drug used in the treatment of toxoplasmosis is clindamycin. The daily dose of the drug (from 25 to 50 mg per 1 kg of animal weight, divided into several doses) 2-4. The course of treatment is 2-4 weeks. Often, clindamycin is prescribed with pyrimetry to increase its effectiveness. During treatment, a sick animal must be given 5 mg of folic acid daily so that the bone marrow does not suffer. After the treatment is necessary to conduct a control study in the veterinary laboratory. In addition to this drug in the treatment of toxoplasmosis use:
- Rovamycin - 100,000 (¼ tablets for cats weighing 4 kg), by mouth 2 times a day. The course of treatment is 3-4 weeks.
- Fansidar (daraprim) - 1 mg / kg (¼ tablets for cats weighing 4-5 kg), by mouth once every 5 days to avoid constipation, the course of treatment should consist of 6-8 doses.
- Sulf 120 - 1 tablet per 4 kg of animal weight, is given orally 2 times a day, the course of treatment is 2-3 weeks.
- Zinaprim - 0.1 mg / kg, intramuscularly, the course of treatment is 10-14 days.
- Biseptol -30 mg / kg, by mouth 3 times a day, a course of treatment for 2-3 weeks.
Pregnant cats in the treatment of toxoplasmosis can not use sulfonamides and pyratamine, they are used spiramycin.
With a strong intoxication of the body and a bright clinic, a solution of glucose is administered intravenously to the cat.
To support the immunity used vitamins B and C, folic acid. Immunomodulators are used - gamavit, fosprinil, gamapren, mastim.
Owners of the animal must bear in mind that the treatment of toxoplasmosis in a cat lasts from 1 month to 3 months. During the course of treatment, the level of antibodies to toxoplasma in the blood is monitored every 2 weeks. The treatment performed is considered effective in obtaining successively two negative antibody results.
Based on the fact that during treatment may develop cat urolithiasis, it is necessary to use anti-inflammatory drugs, as well as diuretic drugs of plant origin.
Prevention. Prevention of toxoplasmosis in a cat should be based on:
- The exception of feeding the cat raw meat, if there is no such possibility, the meat must be given in a boiled or frozen form.
- The cat tray must be cleaned daily, twice a week, and disinfected with a 10% ammonia solution.
- Eliminate the possibility of hunting your cat in mice, rats and birds.
- During the walk, do not allow contact with homeless and domestic animals.
In some veterinary clinics for the prevention of toxoplasmosis, there is a vaccine T-263 for cats from a mutant strain (bradyzoites). This vaccine is used for kittens aged 9-12 weeks.
The concept of toxoplasmosis
Toxoplasmosis is a widespread parasitic disease of animals and humans, the causative agent of which is the simplest intracellular microorganisms. In addition to humans, cats and dogs, they are infected with all mammals, as well as birds. Animals are susceptible to toxoplasmosis, regardless of age, but young and old animals are more susceptible.
The main host of the parasite and the main source of the spread of toxoplasmosis are cats and other members of the cat family. Intermediate hosts are almost all warm-blooded animals. In the intestine of the main host (cat) is the sexual stage of development of the parasite. At the same time, Toxoplasma affects the cells of the intestinal mucosa, multiply inside them and form so-called oocysts, which are excreted in the feces. Inside such oocysts of Toxoplasma must undergo a certain development, which lasts from 1 to 5 days. Only after “maturing” in the external environment do they become infectious for other animals and humans.
What kind of animal is Toxoplasma? These are the simplest intracellular parasites resembling orange slices under a microscope. Cysts - bags of Toxoplasma - get into the soil through the feces of sick cats, and from there they spread further with water, earth, wind, dust on the shoes and wheels of cars. With contaminated soil feed, these cysts enter the body of other animals - dogs, mice, rats, as well as agricultural ones, whose meat is then eaten.
Toxoplasma is one of those parasites that can enter the developing fetus through the placenta, causing miscarriages, stillbirths, and congenital abnormalities in infants.
Felines are the main hosts of Toxoplasma, because it is in them that the parasite reproduces sexually. Man and other animals are intermediate hosts for asexual reproduction of Toxoplasma.
Subsequent experiments have shown that only sick cats can secrete Toxoplasma cysts with feces, unlike other animals and humans. Notoriety came to the cat after some isolated islands, where there were no cats, did not find Toxoplasma in their natural environment. Vaccination of cats living on American farms has reduced the prevalence of toxoplasmosis in mice and pigs. This was proven by a 1999 study.
This high risk is due not only to the high levels of Toxoplasma infection of farm animals, but also to the specificity of the ways of infection of animals. To get infected, pigs, mice, and humans only need to swallow one Toxoplasma oocyst, while even a hundred oocysts will not infect a cat. Oocysts are very resistant to the environment, so they can be stored and not lose the ability of infection up to 18 months.
There are three stages of the life cycle of Toxoplasma, which are characterized by different morphological forms of the parasite:
- Ooscides contain two sporocysts and four sporozoites each. They are dangerous for people - infection occurs due to the presence of this form in the cat's feces. Oocysts are produced only by cats. Insects (cockroaches, flies) can carry oocysts on food, dishes, household appliances - throughout the house. Oocysts are resistant to many environmental factors,
- The rapidly dividing form of tachyzoites is the process of reproduction of Toxoplasma in humans and animals. This form of Toxoplasma dies very quickly in adverse conditions.
Toxoplasmosis and cats
Many cats walking on the street are infected with toxoplasmosis in childhood. A domestic cat can also become infected, even without leaving the apartment. How? Just eating raw meat of an infected animal or through the sand, which we, one way or another, bring to the house on footwear. But do not rush to leave your beloved Murka homeless and throw her on the street!
The most important argument in defense of cats is that the cat is dangerous only two or three weeks after infection. Then the disease turns into a chronic stage, and Toxoplasma is no longer released! Moreover, if the cat toilet is cleaned daily, this significantly reduces the risk of disease.
Since the parasites have an incubation period of 1-5 days. Mammals (including humans) serve only as an intermediate host for the parasite. That is, if a cat lives with you, then, most likely, you have already endured toxoplasmosis and have a lifelong immunity to the disease! There is nothing to be afraid of! In addition, statistics (the thing is stubborn) says that most often people get infected through meat, and not from cats.
Toxoplasmosis is recorded on all continents. Characterized by the presence of natural foci and periodic outbreaks of the disease. In Russia, found in St. Petersburg, in the Leningrad region.
Toxoplasma is excreted from a sick animal everywhere: with saliva, secretions from the eyes, nose, genitals, urine and faeces.
In females, parasites can be excreted with milk, and also penetrate the placenta, infecting the fruit.
Symptoms of the acute form of toxoplasmosis occur 2-3 days after infection: in females - an abortion in the first half of pregnancy, the birth of a non-viable offspring, kittens with congenital deformities (hydrocephalus, underdevelopment of the extremities) increased body temperature to 41 ° C, severe tremors and oppression (cat does not eat or drink). conjunctivitis and purulent rhinitis, persistent diarrhea with discharge of blood and mucus, vomiting, abdominal tenderness on palpation, pale or bluish mucous membranes, tachycardia and frequent breathing, convulsions, paralysis.
An acute form of the disease can lead to death. Chronic course is characterized by animal depletion, diarrhea, unstable appetite and fever. In cats, toxoplasmosis may even occur latently, without causing any symptoms.
Ways to infect a cat with toxoplasmosis
A cat can catch this infection anywhere. For example, licking a paw, eating an infected mouse, food contaminated with the feces of sick animals, on the street, raw meat containing Toxoplasma.
In one case, toxoplasma in the body in a cat breeds in the small intestine, forming cysts that go outside with feces. It is here that when a person cleans the cat tray, there is a risk of infection. Again, the parasites that form in the intestine of a cat will mature in the faeces and become invasive (infectious) only after a certain period of time from 1 to 5 days. Therefore, the cleaned pot will reduce the risk of infection. After infection, the cat releases infectious cysts for about 3 weeks, then this process stops.
Toxoplasmosis can occur in several forms: latent (hidden), subacute, acute (severe).
Express diagnosis of infectious diseases in cats
Diagnosis of infectious diseases is a certain difficulty due to the great diversity and the emergence of new forms of clinical manifestations of infectious diseases.
Quickly identify the pathogen and begin adequate therapy is the key to success in treating an infectious disease. Both specific (sera and globulins) and non-specific antiviral drugs (immunomodulators) are most effective when used in the first days of the disease, later they are ineffective. Early diagnosis allows timely initiation of therapy with specific agents or, on the contrary, not using drugs that are contraindicated in certain pathologies.
As a material for analysis, a small amount of plasma or serum is required, flushing out of the rectum or from the conjunctiva, nasal discharge. The technology of express diagnostics is based on the interaction of pathological material with specific components on the test panel, the result can be assessed after 5-10 minutes. For the test does not require any special conditions and restrictions.
In which cases the use of rapid tests is shown:
- In practice, the most relevant is the differentiation of diseases occurring with similar clinical symptoms (various types of infectious enteritis, giardiasis, plague in dogs) and immunosuppressive diseases in cats (leukemia, viral immunodeficiency of cats). Early diagnosis of panleukopenia ("plague" of cats) significantly increases the chances of a successful outcome of this dangerous and serious disease,
- A rapid test for the diagnosis of adenovirus infection in dogs is performed in order to eliminate the infectious cause of cough in animals of different age groups. In puppies and young dogs, a painful obsessive cough is more often the result of infection with the nursery cough virus, pneumonia, or tracheal structural failure, in middle-aged and older animals, asthma, chronic heart failure, lung neoplasms, and tumor pleurisy are added to this list. Since all these diseases have fundamentally different predictions and approaches to treatment, the effectiveness of therapy directly depends on the accuracy of diagnosis,
- There are also rapid tests to exclude zoonotic diseases from pets that are dangerous to humans, in particular toxoplasmosis.
Treatment of toxoplasmosis in cats
It is impossible to completely cure this disease, therefore the treatment is aimed at eliminating the acute symptoms and transferring toxoplasmosis from the severe to the chronic stage. The transfer of the disease to the remission stage does not allow the owner of the animal to relax, as the cat must be examined annually. The treatment is time consuming and long. У взрослых животных иммунитет уже сформирован, и они легче справляются с заболеванием.В зависимости от форм и стадии заболевания ветеринар подбирает противопаразитные препараты.
Лечению кошек при токсоплазмозе до сих пор уделялось крайне недостаточное внимание.
Для лечения кошек применяют химкокцид в дозе 24 мг/кг массы тела в течение 7 суток. Для профилактики дозу уменьшают и дают 12 мг/кг в течение 25 дней. Можно также применять сульфадимидин в дозе 100 мг/кг, внутрь. It is advisable to divide the daily dose into 4 parts. At the same time, it is recommended to give pyrimethamine at a dose of 1 mg / kg for 1-2 weeks. Apply clindamycin at a dose of 100-250 mg / kg of body weight.
At the same time it is necessary to carry out symptomatic treatment (heart remedies, sedatives, etc.).
The conclusion about toxoplasma in cats
The cat is the final owner of Toxoplasma and is considered the main link in the epidemiology of this disease. These data show that the number of cats that positively react to toxoplasmosis in different countries is different, as well as the number of these animals that produce oocysts.
It should be noted that Toxoplasma strains of unequal virulence circulate in nature, which often leads to a latent course of the disease when animals are infected.
Further, with the advent of new diagnostic methods, for example, PCR, there was a need for a comparative study of existing ones: RAC, XRF, polymerase chain reaction, and scrological research methods.
Although toxoplasma is inherent in the heteroxenic way of existence, nevertheless, not all strains have an intestinal developmental cycle with the formation of oocysts with subsequent sporogony. In particular, there are conflicting information in this regard on the reference strain "YAN".
To date, there is also no complete clarity on chemotherapy and chemoprophylaxis of cats with Toxoplasmosis, especially on the toxicity of the recommended chemical coccide.
Thus, it becomes obvious the need to study a number of questions on the study of serological and clinical monitoring of this disease in cats.
Preventive measures for cats toxoplasmosis
To avoid cat infection with toxoplasmosis and subsequent infection of other pets or family members, you need to remember the precautions:
- the cat tray is cleaned daily, it is disinfected 2 times a week with an ammonia solution,
- gloves should be used when cleaning feces from the cat tray,
- you need to ensure that the cat does not catch rodents and birds,
- raw meat is not suitable for feeding,
- the animal should drink only boiled water,
- you must regularly treat your pet for fleas,
- after talking to the cat, wash your hands and face thoroughly,
- meat before use is subjected to heat treatment,
- since Toxoplasma is often found on fruits and vegetables, they should always be washed thoroughly,
- for cutting meat, you should purchase a separate board and a knife, after contact with raw meat, wash your hands thoroughly,
- pregnant women are strictly forbidden to care for the cat.
Toxoplasmosis is a serious disease that can cause great harm to the body. For this reason, it is necessary to remember about preventive measures. If any unpleasant symptoms are detected, the cat must be shown to the veterinarian and tested.
How do cats become infected with toxoplasmosis?
Basically, this disease affects animals that live on the street. This is characteristic of their habitat and not passing a routine inspection. Only 1% of domestic cats have a risk of infection with toxoplasmosis.
Ways of entry of parasites are quite diverse:
- through raw meat or not well thermally processed - the most common method of infection,
- sniffing the feces of a sick cat or dog,
- by eating the grass on which the parasites were,
- with the soil on which the unhealthy animal was excreted. The cat, washing its face, brings pests to itself,
- in the womb of a sick cat cat gets infected,
- catching a sick rodent or bird and eating them.
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Very often, toxoplasmosis is asymptomatic, only after 2 weeks of infection the first manifestations begin.
The first cycle of the parasite is penetration into the stomach. Within 14 days, these lower organisms enter the blood and invade cells, thereby causing organ malfunction. At first, everything goes in a mild form. It is common for cats to get sick with this disease many times.
- Fast fatiguability,
- Lack of appetite,
- Weight loss,
- Failure of respiratory rhythm,
- The movements of the legs become inconsistent with each other,
- Uncontrollable trembling through the body,
- Loose stools,
- Eruption of stomach contents through the mouth,
- Shingles pain
- Inflammation of the eyelid, mucous membranes change shade to yellow.
Signs of acute invasion
So, signs of acute invasion:
- Dyspeptic disorders
- Suppuration of mucous eyes and nose,
- Worms can be observed in the feces,
- Involuntary muscle contractions
- Involuntary (reflex) jerked forced sonorous exhalation,
- Breathing becomes intermittent, uneven,
- Noise emanating from the respiratory system
- The cat does not play, constantly sleeping.
If you do not start treatment immediately, then the disease becomes latent and then chronic. In general, cats with a strong immune system do not reproduce Toxoplasma, and the pet ceases to be infectious to those around it.
Signs of Chronic Toxoplasmosis
Symptoms of chronic toxoplasmosis:
- The cat refuses to eat,
- Lack of energy, vigor, mobility,
- Appear in the clutches of convulsions
- Slight increase in temperature
- The animal begins to lose weight dramatically.
Veterinarians have developed their treatment regimen, the complex of which includes:
- drugs that remove the inflammatory process.
Treatment is prescribed only after the diagnosis and an accurate diagnosis. The dosage and course prescribed by the doctor based on the individual characteristics of the animals: weight, duration of the disease and stage of the disease, also takes into account age.
- The antiprotozoal drug has an anti-toxoplasmoid and anti-malarial effect,
- contributes to blocking folate reductase, which converts folic acid to folic acid.
- effective against toxoplasmosis in combination with antibiotics such as: Spiramycin and Biseptol.
- synthetic drug with a broad antiprotozoal effect,
- It is rapidly excreted and does not accumulate in the organs.
- Apply with acute toxoplasmosis at the initial stage in the first three days.
- Dosage - 24 milligrams per 1 kilogram of body weight.
Be sure to recommend cats with weakened immune cells. Only high immunity can conquer the disease.
This therapy includes:
- folic acid
- B vitamins and glucose.
Anti-inflammatory and diuretic drugs
For removal of residues of the disease and medications prescribed as an effective therapy.
With favorable treatment:
- improvement occurs within a day,
- you can’t leave the treatment halfway
- be sure to maintain a full course
- antibiotics take at least a week
Since the disease acts on the nervous system of the animal, it is also prescribed sedatives. If the animal does not feel better after 2 days, then re-examination.
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Which cats are more at risk of infection?
Veterinarians allocate several groups of animals that are most susceptible to this disease.
These categories need to be treated more carefully:
- Kittens under 1 year old - insufficiently formed immunity. Giving vitamins,
- Adult cats over 6 years old are caused by the presence of chronic diseases. Engage in treatment and prevention on an ongoing basis,
- Pets who eat raw meat and fish
- Animals hunters on game and small rodents,
- After suffering the disease,
- Often ill,
- Cats living in the street.
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Diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in cats
Visual inspection of toxoplasmosis is not possible to establish. Since he can not manifest himself in any way for a long time. And many of the symptoms are similar to other diseases.
For making an accurate diagnosis, a number of special studies are conducted:
- Examination of feces - feces are collected to determine the presence of Toxoplasma cysts. A positive result will show only after two weeks of infection. Therefore, this method is ineffective.
- Biological sample - blood is taken from the vein. This material is introduced to rats and the result is recorded on the basis of the data obtained.
- Blood test - optional. The presence of lymphocytes and eosinophils in the blood can also indicate a positive result.
All the data collected together, and the doctor says what stage the disease is at. You can also say with precision how much time the animal suffers from the disease. And, most importantly, appropriate treatment is prescribed.
If the diagnosis showed a negative result, then you should not be complacent at this stage. It is better to try to retake all the tests after 2 weeks.
- The animal should be limited to communicating with other street cats and dogs,
- Regular wet cleaning of the room with special care products where the pet lives,
- Do not allow grass to be consumed
- Personal hygiene products of the pet (tray, cups for food and drink) as often as possible to handle cleaning and disinfecting agents,
- Exclude from the diet of raw meat and fish,
- In a private house, make sure that the cat does not hunt small rodents, birds that are carriers of parasites,
- To wash street shoes, as we can bring the remains of feces of sick animals from the street,
- Buy products for an animal only in verified places,
- Do not give raw water
- Observe external changes in the behavior of the animal,
- Vaccination - is done at three months of age. Before vaccination tests for the presence of parasites. When confirming worms - first treat the pet and only then vaccinate. Contraindications: pregnancy and individual intolerance,
- To wash the cat's paws after each visit to the street, completely the whole body with special pet care products 1 time in three months.
Any deviations from the usual rhythm should alert the owner, and he should seek the help of a specialist. The sooner the causes are identified and the doctor makes an accurate diagnosis, the more effective the treatment will be. It also helps to avoid severe manifestations and side effects.
It is especially important to prevent the transition to the chronic form, because other organs suffer from this. Always keep under control any disease and immunity. Do not self-medicate, it can be harmful, not good.
What is toxoplasmosis
So called the infection of the body by intracellular parasites, called Toxoplasma. According to statistics, up to 25% of meat products on the shelves contain Toxoplasma. Carriers can be animals, birds, people: 50% of animals, 30% or more (depending on the region - up to 90%) of people are carriers of microbes. But most of all Toxoplasma love to settle in cats, and below we will tell why.
Toxoplasma life periods
Initially the parasite is in sleeping state in the world around us: water, land, on the street, from where it gets into our home on shoes. Also, the cat can eat an infected mouse, a piece of raw meat, or lick the germ from its fur.
Having successfully penetrated into the cat's body, microbes tend to quickly get to the small intestine of a cat. Next is the development of the microbe to cysts (the so-called intermediate state of microorganisms) and their subsequent reproduction inside animal cells. The cells themselves eventually die, and cysts come out with the cat's feces, and spread further, capturing new organisms.
To become able to infect other organisms, the cyst needs to grow within 2-3 days. Immediately after the cat has gone over large, you will not get infected anyway - the parasite is simply not capable of doing this. If you remove the tray every day, wash your hands before eating and do not kiss the cat wherever you should, then you will not get toxoplasmosis.
Even after 14-30 days, the release of parasites to the outside stops, they cease to leave the cat's body, concentrating on its capture. It turns out that a cat can get infected with toxoplasmosis only in a certain period of time: 2-3 weeks after its infection, and within 14-30 days.
The capture of the cat's body occurs according to the following plan: first penetration into the spleen through the intestines, then red bone marrow, where they multiply, and through the blood enter all organs. But this process is not so smooth for the parasite: the immune system is going to fight it. Toxoplasma is able to completely capture only a cat with a weakened immune system: old, sick or very young. Otherwise, the body's defenses will stop the parasite’s free movement, freeze or stop its reproduction. Toxoplasma will be enclosed in cells as cysts for several years in anticipation of its hour, without in any way reminding of itself.
Effect of Toxoplasma on humans
In the human body, Toxoplasma is trapped inside the cells, without affecting health or health if the immune system is not compromised. But it is worth noting that the effect of the parasite on humans has not been studied until the end.
People with insufficient immunity when infected with parasites, the same symptoms can appear as with a cold - enlarged lymph nodes, fever, weakened condition, muscle aches.
Toxoplasmosis in pregnancy in women
For the mother's body, the parasite is harmless, but not for the human embryo. Doctors agree that Toxoplasma can be deadly for the fetus, provoke a miscarriage or cause pathology in the unborn child.
Do I need to get rid of the cat pregnant woman? It depends on whether the microbes were previously in the mother’s body. This can be found in the clinic, having passed the tests.
- If a woman has already had Toxoplasmosis, the microbes will be in a sleeping (frozen) state, Toxoplasma will not enter the blood and will not be transmitted to the embryo, because it is locked in cysts, does not circulate through the mother's body. In this case, nothing to fear.
- If toxoplasmosis was not in the history of the disease, then the expectant mother should be especially careful during pregnancy. It is necessary not only to make sure that the cat is healthy, but also to roast the meat well, carefully chop it, wash vegetables and fruits thoroughly, and work only with gloves in the ground.
We recommend getting a detailed consultation from a specialist.
Pussies at risk: which cats have an increased chance of being infected with toxoplasmosis
- Kittens that have not lived their first year of life.
- Age cats from 6 years.
- Animals fed raw meat.
- Introduced themselves, having access to the street, to the ground, to other animals. For example, mice.
- Sick animals, or who have had severe illnesses in the past.
- Experiencing constant stress, living in extreme conditions, or living for a long time.
Even if your cat falls under a few items of this list, this does not mean that she will become infected. But the chances are greatly increased. To reduce them, we need prevention.
What causes toxoplasmosis?
The culprits are the smallest parasites, the simplest. And the "name" of the pathogen Toxoplasma gondii (Toxoplasma gandhi). They can increase their number in 2 ways: sexual and asexual. The first occurs exclusively in the body (more precisely, in the intestines) of representatives of the cat family. Asexual reproduction - in the body of other susceptible animals, parasites penetrate into the cells. Therefore, the seals become infected when they eat a sick animal.
Cats secrete the parasite into the environment with faeces. Toxoplasma can "exist" in the environment and pose a danger to animals and people for almost a year and a half!
The development cycle of the parasite
Favorite pet can get very easily. If the cat walks outside, then there it can catch and eat an infected mouse, sniff the excrement of the sick animal, or lick them. Home is also not safe. Вы можете принести паразита на своей обуви, которую потом оближет, понюхает ваш котик. Однако более частая причина заболевания кроется в плохой термической обработке мяса. Передача от человека человеку исключена, если не учитывать заражение плода от матери.
In this way, Toxoplasma enters the body of the primary host.
Now, Toxoplasma begins to multiply. First, the protozoa increase in quantity in the small intestine. Somewhere else 3 weeks after infection, the cat secretes parasite cysts with feces. But they need another day to “ripen”. If to throw out fresh feces, observing safety measures, the chance of infection is minimal. After 3-4 weeks, Toxoplasma begins to multiply in the cat's body, penetrating into the cells, which, of course, leads to disruption of the organs.
Other animals become infected when they swallow or inhale mature Toxoplasma cysts. That is why it is very important to remove the cat's feces in gloves, preferably even in a gauze bandage, immediately, without waiting for the tray to be completely cleaned. Be sure that the child on the street does not drag sand into his mouth or something. Still, stray cats are crap everywhere, so there are millions of mature cysts on the street.
When cysts enter the body of the secondary host (human, birdies, mammals), the protozoa "go out" of it, which penetrate into the cell.
For details on the disease, see the video:
How can you get Toxoplasmosis from a cat
The greatest level of threat comes from a cat suffering from acute toxoplasmosis. During this period, the parasites leave the body of the pet not only with feces, but also through saliva, tears, urine, discharge from the nose. If a dead kitten was born to an animal or an involuntary abortion occurred, then Toxoplasma will also come out with milk. For a person, this period is the most dangerous time. Also, even if the cat was normally delivered, communicating with it, it is necessary to adhere to the rules of hygiene.
There are many countries in the world where most of the population suffers from toxoplasmosis. But this is not a signal to refuse to communicate with a cute fluffy animal. The main thing is to know how toxoplasmosis can enter the body and make efforts to prevent this from happening. So, the disease can be transmitted to a person through the following sources:
- Plate. Poorly processed, uncooked meat.
- Transplantation of internal organs.
- From the mother, still in the womb.
- In contact with the ground.
- Lack of hygiene.
- Wounds on the body.
Diagnosis and treatment
To confirm the diagnosis of toxoplasmosis in a cat is extremely difficult. After all, the parasite in the feces is present for only a few weeks, so a koproskopichesky study may not give results. Symptoms of toxoplasmosis are not very specific, so it is extremely difficult to establish a diagnosis. As an option, it is a bioassay on mice. Not cheap, it takes time, but most effectively. Blood testing does not always help, although you can resort to PCR.
Among other things, you can examine the animal feces, or undergo a serological analysis for toxoplasmosis in cats. You can still conduct cytological studies.
A negative result does not give a 100% guarantee that the cat is not the carrier of the simplest. You need to try another research method that the vet will offer you.
In humans, you can check the blood for antibodies to toxoplasma. All pregnant women who are registered must donate blood for research. For future moms, toxoplasmosis is very dangerous. It causes not only deformities of the fetus, but even its death. In faeces, nothing can be found. For this reason, pregnant women are not advised to contact with cats or start new ones, as they may be acute.
How to treat toxoplasmosis in cats? Unfortunately, to completely cure a cat from toxoplasmosis will not succeed. The therapy is mainly aimed at eliminating the symptoms and restoring the affected organs. Destroy the simplest will not work. Habitated anthelmintic useless, because they are aimed at eliminating cestodes, nematodes or trematodes, but not on the simplest.
Usually, the treatment of a cat is delayed for a long time (from several months to a year). In addition to drugs for rehabilitation and symptomatic therapy requires constant analysis. For this reason, contact a good veterinarian with decent work experience. The charitable forecast is provided only to those pets who have strong immunity. If the mustache often suffers, it has inflammatory processes, it is unlikely that he will be able to help him.
Pregnancy and cats with toxoplasmosis
Despite the fact that the symptoms of toxoplasmosis in a cat may not be at all, this does not mean that it is not a source of infection. Toxoplasmas are not terrible for a healthy adult, since in his body they are literally and figuratively trapped in cells. But the embryo Toxoplasma can seriously harm. Parasites that have penetrated the placenta can invade the embryo, cause congenital abnormalities, lead to an increase in gestational age and even miscarriage.
Checking cats for toxoplasmosis is not available in all clinics, so the best way to prevent a pregnant woman is to completely stop contacting the cat.
It should be clarified that this measure should be applied only to women who have not previously been ill with toxoplasmosis. You can find out with the help of analyzes. If the results of studies show the presence of sleeping (encapsulated) Toxoplasma in the body of a pregnant woman, then you can not worry about the health of the fetus. In this case, the baby will be protected by the immune system, it will not allow toxoplasma to pass through the placenta. And it does not matter how clearly the cat has an infection with Toxoplasmosis, and whether it has a cyst secretion through the feces.
But if a woman did not have, and there is no toxoplasmosis, then in addition to restricting contacts, additional preventive measures must be observed:
- with care to carve raw meat,
- wash and scald fruits, vegetables,
- If you have to work, wear gloves.
It is worth knowing that from a woman infected with toxoplasmosis, the disease can be transmitted to the fetus only once, the same applies to cats. Therefore, during the subsequent pregnancy, the risk of having a baby with pathological deviations equals zero.
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