Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Does Owning a Cat Make You Sexier?

Now when I first started reading this article, I swear I thought it was on "The Onion" or some other parody website.. not  I followed the link figuring it would take me to a parody website, but it took me to fox news.  Seriously? 

In 2003, researchers at Charles University in Prague conducted a study funded by the Stanley Research Medical Institute in Bethesda, MD, which showed that domestic cats infected with the toxoplasma gondii parasite - the same parasite that's the reason pregnant women are advised to stay away from the kitty litter box - can actually alter the personalities of their human owners.
I can't help but wonder how they determined it was the parasite that caused this, and not the fact that these women got older - which changes our personalities in and of itself.
 Women exposed to the parasite experienced a desirable attitude adjustment. According to the study, infected women were shown to be more easygoing and warm-hearted, with more close friendships. Plus, they cared more about how they looked. "However," adds Dr. Jaroslav Flegr, who conducted the study, "they were also less trustworthy and had more relationships with men."

Now lest you think this is a women only issue, apparently it turns men into "alley cats" .... from Fox News
Infected men, on the other hand, became more aggressive, less well-groomed, undesirable loners who were more likely to be suspicious and jealous.


I've heard of the research on toxo and schizophrenia and bi-polar and that doesn't sound nearly as crazy as this study.  Who ever thought to study this?  Maybe they were studying brain issues and stumbled upon this??

really no point to this post other then.. "Seriously?"

Just a small aside, Toxo isn't the huge danger that a lot of people think it is.  It is serious yes.  I don't want to diminish that, but the cat only sheds it for 10 -14 days after infection.  Then you have to ingest it and it is in the stool, so unless you aren't practicing basic hygiene, you are generally fine.  As for litter boxes and pregnant women, it takes two days for the toxo to become airborne, so if a pregnant woman happens to have a cat who happens to have been infected and happens to be using a litter box in the house (most wouldn't be because they would have been outside catching the mice that infected them, and thus most likely wouldn't have an indoor litter box - not to say that mice don't come inside... but still) and she doesn't scoop the box every day, then she is at risk - sounds pretty small hun?

From what I have gathered, it is much easier to get it from eating undercooked meat or unwashed fruits and veg..
(guess there was a point to this post after all)

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous5:14 PM

    Hmm.. I can agree that having cats has probably changed my personality a bit over the years, but I'm not ready to conclude that it has anything to do with toxoplasma gondii :P (Also, I probably actually care less about how I look since I have generally given up on being worried about being covered in cat hair ;-)

    I can see what you thought that study was a joke.


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