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Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Pink lamb and cats

Amongst the many curiosities of the Toxoplasmosis scare is that so many of the truths are counter-intuitive; Toxoplasma Gondii is a cunning little devil. Cats eating rats and mice are so vital to its life cycle, for example, that infected mice will actually be attracted to the smell of cat urine - giving even the laziest mouser a good chance of a meal. Here are some more of the weirder facts;
  • About 1 in 100 cats are infected - cats must eat rats or mice to get infected
  • Cat owners who hate gardening are less at risk than their green-fingered cat-hating neighbours - TG is transmitted to humans through 2-day old or more cat poo by accidental ingestion after contact with soil
  • TG can live in the garden soil for up to a year - long after the cat-poo has disappeared
  • Somewhere between a third and a half of the world's population are infected
  • Handling raw meat incurs a high risk of infection; butchers and chefs are therefore more likely to be infected than vets
  • Eating pink lamb is more hazardous than licking an infected cat's bottom
  • Eating unwashed organic veg is more hazardous than eating pink lamb
  • TG infection can be beneficial to people with acute anxiety disorder, making them more laid-back
  • TG infection can be beneficial to female students; a 1999 study found infected women displayed higher intelligence and greater guilt-proness
  • Depressed men will also benefit from TG infection, though they'll be more liable to have traffic accidents
  • Civil servants will also benefit from TG infection, as it tends to lower risk-aversity
So the highest risk group are keen organic gardeners,who also make their own sausages, growing their own veg who live next to cat owners. If you're one of these, sorry. On the upside, your brain will make lots more dopamine - so at least you'll be cheerful about it.


Barnacle Bill said...

How many of Cast Iron's new cabinet are infected?
We have a right to know!

G. Tingey said...

In other words, if you've been gardening - wash your hands.
Problem solved.
ANOTHER scare story

Anonymous said...

Sounds like we should be banning cats...

Trouble is, I am not sure whether there is an EU directive/regulation for this.

Anonymous said...

Phew, I use slug pellets and sprays I despise garden pests and take a very final solution to them.
Ha,so I was right all along eh?

Anonymous said...

Hey Raedwald, don't give the anti-organic, anti-farmer propagandists (Monsanto shills) more ammo! :)

meltemian said...

I'm a vegtable-growing gardener with seven cats....there's obviously no hope for me!

Demetrius said...


Anonymous said...

You may find that 'Lillies' and cats is not a good combination (or may be a good combination depending on your view of cats)

lilith said...

I have really enjoyed informing people that "Eating pink lamb is more hazardous than licking an infected cat's bottom" today.

Andy said...

So it basically boils down to cooking your food properly and practising good personal and kitchen hygene?

cos as much as i love my cats I`ve never been tempted to lick their bottoms.