What human health concerns can occur from unclean cat conditions?


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Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra - What kind of health hazards are there for having too many cats in a small 2-bedroom apartment that is very unclean and has a very strong urine and feces smell with urine and feces on everything including clothing?

A. Lemaster


Hi – thanks for your email. You asked about what kind of health hazards there are for having too many cats in a small unclean apartment. You also indicated that there is very strong urine and feces smells on everything including clothing?

Well, this is a difficult question. There are certainly health concerns that can occur from living in unclean conditions in general. There could be a higher incidence of zoonotic disease from dealing with cat feces in unclean conditions.

Living like that is not very appealing for cats. Cats prefer to be clean areas and not live in soiled conditions.

Dr. Debra

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About The Author

debra-primovic Dr. Debra Primovic

Debra A. Primovic, BSN, DVM, Editor-in-Chief, is a graduate of the Ohio State University School of Nursing and the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine. Following her veterinary medical training, Dr. Primovic practiced in general small animal practices as well as veterinary emergency practices. She was staff veterinarian at the Animal Emergency Clinic of St. Louis, Missouri, one of the busiest emergency/critical care practices in the United States as well as MedVet Columbus, winner of the AAHA Hospital of the year in 2014. She also spends time in general practice at the Granville Veterinary Clinic. Dr. Primovic divides her time among veterinary emergency and general practice, editing, writing, and updating articles for PetPlace.com, and editing and indexing for veterinary publications. She loves both dogs and cats but has had extraordinary cats in her life, all of which have died over the past couple years. Special cats in her life were Kali, Sammy, Pepper and Beanie.