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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017, Article ID 7615810, 6 pages
Research Article

Prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii and Other Gastrointestinal Parasites in Domestic Cats from Households in Thika Region, Kenya

1Department of Biochemistry, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), P.O. Box 62000-00200, Nairobi, Kenya
2Department of Animal Sciences, JKUAT, P.O. Box 62000-00200, Nairobi, Kenya
3Department of Public and Community Health, JKUAT, P.O. Box 62000-00200, Nairobi, Kenya
4Department of Animal Health & Production, Mount Kenya University, P.O. Box 342-01000, Thika, Kenya
5Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Guelph University, 488 Gordon Street, Science Complex, Guelph, ON, Canada

Correspondence should be addressed to John Maina Kagira; moc.liamg@arigakj

Received 17 March 2017; Accepted 21 May 2017; Published 13 June 2017

Academic Editor: Mansour El-Matbouli

Copyright © 2017 Adele Nyambura Njuguna et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Gastrointestinal (GIT) parasites of domestic cats (Felis catus) not only cause morbidity but are also potential zoonotic agents. The current study aimed at establishing the prevalence of GIT parasites in cats kept by households in Thika region, Kenya. Fecal samples were collected randomly from 103 cats and analyzed for presence of parasites using standard parasitological methods. In descending order, the prevalence of the detected protozoa parasites was Isospora spp. 43.7% (95% CI: 40.4–47%), Cryptosporidium spp. 40.8% (95% CI: 37.5–44.1%), Toxoplasma gondii 7.8% (95% CI: 4.5–11.1%), and Entamoeba spp. 2.9% (95% CI: 1.6–6.2%). The prevalence of the observed helminths was Strongyloides stercoralis 43.7% (95% CI: 40.4–47%), Toxocara cati 23.3% (95% CI: 20–26.6%), Ancylostoma spp. 9.7% (95% CI: 6.4–13%), Dipylidium caninum 8.7% (95% CI: 5.4–12.0%), and Acanthocephala spp. 1.9% (95% CI: 1–4.2%). The percentage of cats excreting at least one species of parasite was 73.2% (95% CI = 69.9–76.5%). The study shows that the cats have high spectrum (9) of parasites which are known to affect the cat’s health and some are of zoonotic significance.