Cats, especially short-haired ones, are generally easy to manage and care for. After all, felines can be easily potty-trained, and aproper litter box often does the trick.

However, it is important to note that cat poop, as with all fecal matter, contains a lot of unhealthy bacteria and organisms. In fact, Science Daily reports that some kitties discard poop that may have traces of Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii), a parasite that causes toxoplasmosis epidemics (a certain type of parasitic infection) even in healthy people.

The parasite in question is alarmingly linked to several serious conditions such as schizophrenia, rheumatoid arthritis, and even brain cancer.

However, researchers say that the cat owners don't need to be worried about getting sick as long as they take necessary precautions. Litter boxes or areas where felines do their business (such as soil plots) should be regularly cleaned. When gardening, always wear gloves as bits of soil stuck under your fingernails may contain as much as 100 T. gondii oocysts.

Keeping your cats indoors may also lower your risk of infection. Last but not the least, keep your immune system up. Healthy and working antibodies are our best defense against disease-causing parasites.

(Photo by Kevin Dooley via Flickr Creative Commons)

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