Toxoplasmosis (Toxoplasma gondii) is a single-celled parasite that infects all warm-blooded animals, such as dogs, cats and even humans. This is a parasite that is a major issue for certain segments of the general population, is frequently overlooked when it comes to our cats. The parasite usually doesn’t cause any major signs or issues in cats, unless your cat is suffering from an weak immune system..
What Is Toxoplasmosis?
Toxoplasmosis is a type of disease and is caused due to the parasite organism T. gondii. Where Do Birds Go At Night Despite the fact that it is among the most frequent parasitic diseases, however, it doesn’t usually cause any clinical signs in cats (or humans).).
T. gondii is a complex life cycle that involves a variety of host species and cystic types. There are two kinds of hosts that are suitable for T. gondii. A host that is a definitive one houses the parasite, as it reproduces itself by the production of eggs known as oocysts, which are then be released into the host’s feces. A host that is intermediate houses the parasite since it reproduces itself, but without producing eggs.
Wild and domestic cats are the sole type of definitive hosts for T. gondii. Humans are considered as intermediate hosts. Although it was unclear what made cats the ultimate host, research has proven that T. gondii can only reproduce inside cats because felines has a particular type of essential fat acid.1
Symptoms of Toxoplasmosis in Cats
Most healthy cats will never get clinically sick from an infection caused by T. gondii. The likelihood of contracting clinical disease should your cat become infected is minimal. Certain bacteria within a cat could infiltrate the intestinal wall and then multiply within the intestinal walls. Others may move further inside the cat. Whatever the place these T. gondii will end up your cat’s immunity will push these particular organisms to go into a dormant cystic form.
Sometimes, however the cat’s immune system doesn’t have the strength enough to defend against the microbes that may be able to migrate from the gastrointestinal tract the cat may begin to show generally mild signs of the illness. A kitten in the early stages or a cat with an immune system that is weaker and is already suffering from feline leukemia virus (FeLV) or feline immunodeficiency viruses (FIV) may exhibit the following signs if they are affected by T. gondii:2
Cats that are infected by the parasite might experience fever and this is among the most frequently reported symptoms. Although it is best to leave it to your veterinarian to determine your cat’s temperature by using the aid of a thermometer, you could observe signs of fever. The cat might shiver and feel numb, or have a loss of appetite and may be experiencing a rapid heartbeat.
Loss of Appetite
Another frequent, yet not specific symptom that your cat could display is one that is a absence of appetite. The lack of interest in food can be accompanied by breathing problems. If a cat cannot smell its food, it’s likely to quit eating.
When a cat is sick, it may feel numb, especially those who are infected with this parasite.
If the parasite has moved into the lungs of your cat, it could be experiencing difficulties breathing. This can cause pneumonia, and breathing may become constantly worse. This means that your cat may experience difficulty swallowing when eating.
In the event that the parasite lies found in the eye area your cat will exhibit various signs, including inflammation or abnormally large pupil size, sensitivity to light and possibly blindness.
If the parasite has made its way into the liver of your cat the cat may appear to be jaundiced however, it could appear very subtle and difficult to spot. The cat’s mucous and skin membranes, which include the ears, eyes and gums can take on yellowish hue.
When toxoplasmosis impacts the central nervous systemin your pet’s cat, it could start to experience tremors or seizures. can cats eat tomatoes A seizure may be a sign of another illness, therefore, don’t ignore the symptom and contact your veterinarian immediately.
In the presence of this parasite, it can cause changes in the behavior of your cat. A few personality changes can include avoiding being touched or walking around in circles and pressing its head on the surface, continuous incontinence, ear twitching or the loss of control over the feces.