Gastrointestinal Parasites of Domestic Cats from Botucatu City, São Paulo State, Brazil
Veterinary Clinical Department, School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Botucatu, Brazil
With the recent increase in acquisition of cats as pets, their contact with man has been intensified. Parasites are among the most common causes of gastrointestinal disease in cats. Several etiologic agents of zoonotic potential have been reported in domestic cats, like helminths and protozoa. The aim of this study was to identify the gastrointestinal parasites in infected household cats from Botucatu city, São Paulo (SP) state, Brazil. Fifty cats with positive fecal flotation for gastrointestinal parasites were include in the study. The fecal samples were examined by saturated sodium chloride flotation and zinc sulphate flotation techniques and followed by microscopy. Of the 50 cats examined, 56% were males and 44% females, 38% were young and 62% adults. Overall, 74% were infected with a single species of parasite, and 26% with two species. Giardia spp. was the most prevalent parasite in 46,8% of the cats. Nineteen animals (30,7%) were parasitized with Isospora spp. and 19,4% with Ancylostoma spp. Strongyloides stercoralis and Dipylidium caninum occurred in only one cat (1,61%). Associations that occurred were Giardia spp. with Isospora spp. in 30,7%, Giardia spp. with Ancylostoma spp. in 30,7%, Ancylostoma spp. with Isospora spp. in 23,08%, Giardia spp. with Strongyloides stercoralis in 7,69%, and Dipylidium caninum with Isospora spp. in 7,69% of the evaluated cats. It is important that veterinarians educate their owners of cats about the importance of hygiene practices and correct anthelmintic and antiprotozoal drug administration to avoid parasitic zoonoses.