Reassurance over Toxoplasma risk
The British Veterinary Association (BVA) are urging people not to be alarmed over Toxoplasma headlines.
Though the reports contain important messages in raising awareness of the disease and the need for good personal hygiene, the BVA believe the risks should not be overplayed.
Toxoplasma is a parasitic disease most commonly spread by infected cats or by eating contaminated meat or vegetables. Research has linked the disease to schizophrenia and it is known to cause illness in humans, more seriously to those vulnerable such as pregnant women.
The BVA advise hand washing after handling cats, keeping children away from cat litter trays, removing cat faeces promptly and properly, and pregnant women to use gloves when cleaning cat litter trays.
Harvey Locke, veterinary surgeon and past president of the BVA, said: "While the facts are true, the headlines in this story have been quite alarmist and we are very keen to reassure cat owners that the risks can be managed with good basic hygiene and common sense.
"There is no need for people to get rid of their pet cats or choose not to have cats as pets."