Scientists Discover Link Between Cats & Schizophrenia

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AnonymousAnonymous
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Double Retired
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15 Apr 2024, 7:30 pm

The article leaves me wondering whether cats might be the effect rather than the cause.

Might people inclined toward schizophrenia be more inclined to get a cat?


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naturalplastic
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15 Apr 2024, 7:32 pm

I remember reading a profile a science professor at my old university when I was a student there in the Seventies...almost as an aside and as after thought he said he had a theory that "cat ownership causes schizophrenia".

Well...I guess someone finally got around to testing his hypothesis and found SOME correlations.

I think its a conspiracy by the U.S. kennel club!



Last edited by naturalplastic on 15 Apr 2024, 7:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.

naturalplastic
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15 Apr 2024, 7:33 pm

Double Retired wrote:
The article leaves me wondering whether cats might be the effect rather than the cause.

Might people inclined toward schizophrenia be more inclined to get a cat?


Do crazy cat ladies collect cats because theyre psycho...or are they psycho because they collect cats?



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15 Apr 2024, 7:46 pm

naturalplastic wrote:
Double Retired wrote:
The article leaves me wondering whether cats might be the effect rather than the cause.

Might people inclined toward schizophrenia be more inclined to get a cat?


Do crazy cat ladies collect cats because theyre psycho...or are they psycho because they collect cats?


I think they're just lonely and desire affection from anything other than backstabbing humans. :cat:


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15 Apr 2024, 7:58 pm

I've loved cats all my life and I think whoever came up with the study is nothing but a total cat hater.

For most of my childhood and early teen years I couldn't own a cat because my mom is allergic. So why did I start having schizophrenia-like symptoms when I was around 12? And why were they gone by the time I did get a cat, which was when I was around 18?

The cat haters just want a justified reason for their outdated and ridiculous reasons for their bigotry.



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15 Apr 2024, 8:30 pm

I think there's a lot of academics out there who enjoy pushing their own agendas on the world. :nerdy:


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Fenn
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15 Apr 2024, 8:34 pm

I’ve met some cats like that.



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16 Apr 2024, 6:50 am

I don't remember the specific details but I read an article about this a couple a years ago. I think it said some cats can have a parasite that they suspect cause schizophrenia if transfered to people.


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MaxE
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16 Apr 2024, 7:34 am

My cat just told me this is nonsense.


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naturalplastic
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16 Apr 2024, 7:59 am

BillyTree wrote:
I don't remember the specific details but I read an article about this a couple a years ago. I think it said some cats can have a parasite that they suspect cause schizophrenia if transfered to people.


Yes. The linked article in the original post mentions the parasite T Gondi. A protozoan microbe that lives as a parasite in cats. According to Wiki it lives in mice, and influences the mice to become...less afraid of cats...so the mice end up as cat dinner. And then the parasite infects the cats...and sexually reproduces in the cats.

So if the creature can modify mouse behavior...maybe it could make humans bonkers. i



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16 Apr 2024, 10:58 am

naturalplastic wrote:
BillyTree wrote:
I don't remember the specific details but I read an article about this a couple a years ago. I think it said some cats can have a parasite that they suspect cause schizophrenia if transfered to people.


Yes. The linked article in the original post mentions the parasite T Gondi. A protozoan microbe that lives as a parasite in cats. According to Wiki it lives in mice, and influences the mice to become...less afraid of cats...so the mice end up as cat dinner. And then the parasite infects the cats...and sexually reproduces in the cats.

So if the creature can modify mouse behavior...maybe it could make humans bonkers. i


Sorry. I should have read the article before posting. But, to my defence, from the comments in the thread there was no indication that the parasite was mentioned in the article. :o


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naturalplastic
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16 Apr 2024, 4:07 pm

you're forgiven. Lol!

A friend and fellow cat lover opined that thats part of how cats 'domesticate us' by putting out some chemical (or parasite) that influences our behavior.

I go with the theory that both animals trigger instincts in the other. Adult humans are the same size relative to an adult cat what a mom cat is to her kittens. And an adult cat is about the size of a human infant. So they trigger our parenting instincts and we remind THEM of their moms from way back. Trouble is we tend to flip them on their backs and craddle them like human babies (tom cats tolerate that crap, but not females for a moment) so we have to learn to let them curl up next to us (like they would against thier mommies).



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16 Apr 2024, 4:26 pm

Quote:
Other studies linked cat exposure to high scores on scales that measure traits related to schizophrenia. But, again, other studies didn't show such a connection.

So in order to get a better understanding researchers did a thorough review and analysis of all the research on cats and schizophrenia.

The parasite T. gondii can be transmitted through a bite or the faeces from an infected cat. People can get infected without any symptoms, but research found more strange effects the infection may have.

Once in the body, T. gondii can infiltrate the central nervous system and influence neurotransmitters. The parasite has been linked to personality changes and some neurological disorders, including schizophrenia.

The new analysis of 17 studies found "a significant positive association between broadly defined cat ownership and an increased risk of schizophrenia-related disorders".

"After adjusting for covariates, we found that individuals exposed to cats had approximately twice the odds of developing schizophrenia," the team explained.

However, it is important to note that 15 of the 17 studies were case-control studies, meaning it cannot prove cause and effect. On top of this, a number of the studies were of low quality, which the authors highlight.

The researchers agree that better and broader research is needed.
Maybe MaxE's cat could help us understand things.



Oh, regarding how cat's domesticate us, I'd like to offer a candidate explanation:
*- When mankind developed agriculture it became necessary to store food and seed
*- When they stored food and seed they attracted vermin that ate it (for instance, rats and mice)
*- The vermin attracted wild cats who wanted to eat the vermin
*- At any given farm or settlement there were two possible outcomes:
<=+=>1. The farmers were nice to the cats and therefore had fewer vermin
<=+=>2. The farmers chased the cats away and and had more vermin

=>So farmers who were nice to cats had more food and were healthier and better able to reproduce.

That is, the cats have been genetically selecting us to be nice to them. :cat:


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naturalplastic
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16 Apr 2024, 5:00 pm

^ That goes without saying that that was main reason. But I am saying that cats may had ways to reinforce (intensionally not a hold on us).

Dogs took up with us when we were cavemen and hunters several tens of thousands of years ago.

Cats took up with us later (but are still ancient) when we became farmers. Our surplus grain attract rodents. And the rodents attracted cats. And some cats found it advantages to feign affection for these rat magnent farmers.

North African wildcats took up with us first somewhere in or near Egypt maybe 8 thousand years ago.

They didnt become common outside of Egypt until Roman Times but then they spread the whole length of Eurasia-from the Atlantic east to beyond the Roman Empire to Japan and China. .

Am saying that in addition to that cats might have other tricks up their sleaves (tricks that other rodent predators like ferrets dont have to further get us).



Last edited by naturalplastic on 16 Apr 2024, 5:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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16 Apr 2024, 5:13 pm

In contrast (not that one animal pet is better than the other) dogs were already on every continent except antarctica. Australia was a semi exception. In Australia the Abos did not have domestic dogs as we know them, but Australia had a wild critter called the dingo that was clearly brought to Australia by early man that was a kind of intermediate in evolution frozen in time between wolves and domestic dogs.