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And now, from the What Will They Blame On Cats Next department, comes this news: Cats can cause road rage.
I can think of a couple of reasons why cats would infuriate their people. Not using the litter box comes to mind. But the scientists who came up with the road rage theory would say it’s using the litter box, not failing to use it, that could cause sudden angry outbursts.
Blame It On Toxoplasmosis
In a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, researchers from the University of Chicago looked at 358 people and found that those who had been exposed to the parasite Toxoplasma gondii showed impulsive anger twice as much as those who hadn’t been exposed.
The researchers, led by University of Chicago professor Emil F. Coccaro, MD, were hoping to pioneer in the diagnosis and management of Intermittent Explosive Disorder, which can show itself as road rage and is believed to affect about 16 million people in the United States.
“Our work suggests that latent infection with the toxoplasma gondii parasite may change brain chemistry in a fashion that increases the risk of aggressive behavior,” Coccaro said in a statement about the study. “However, we do not know if this relationship is causal, and not everyone that tests positive for toxoplasmosis will have aggression issues.”
But Don’t Blame The Cat
But it’s also “rare to find cats shedding oocysts in their feces” at all, the website continues. “For example one study of more than 206 cats showed nearly 25 percent had been infected with T gondii, but none of them were shedding oocysts in their feces.”
Prevention Is Just A Scoop Away
Speak Out For Cats
The Vapor Vault is a good way to store
used litter until you’re ready to put
it in the trash.