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Could Your Cat's Litter Box Be a Health Concern?

Last updated 5 years ago

Cat owners should not underestimate the importance of keeping their cat’s litter tray as clean as possible, as there are many health implications that can arise from dirty litter trays, for both cats and humans.

One particular concern for pregnant women and people with a compromised immune system is the threat of toxoplasmosis, an infection which may be carried in a cat’s faeces and spread to their owners when cleaning the cat’s litter tray.

In this video pet first aid expert Diana Korten explains how to reduce the risk of toxoplasmosis and keep your cat’s litter box clean all year round. The first step is to have your cat examined by a vet to determine whether they are carrying toxoplasmosis through a simple blood test. Further to this it is a good idea to keep your cat indoors as much as possible for the duration of the pregnancy. Toxoplasmosis has been linked with stillbirth, miscarriage, birth defects and schizophrenia in children.

Even if your cat doesn’t have this condition, it’s still wise to use caution and follow hygiene guidelines when cleaning out their litter tray. The tray itself should be replaced at least every six months, as even if it’s cleaned and disinfected regularly using bleach cats may still scratch the plastic and allow bacteria to build up in the crevices.

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