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a veterinarian holding a kitten

Good veterinary care is important to your health and the health of your pet.

Cat scratch disease (CSD), Bartonella henselae

  • Avoid rough play with cats, particularly strays and kittens, to prevent scratches. This is especially important for immunocompromised individuals. Wash hands promptly after handling cats.
  • Treat cats for fleas using fipronil and other spot-on treatments. Check with your veterinarian. Permethrin should not be used on cats.
  • Use a flea collar or similar topical preventive on dogs (fipronil, methoprene, imidocloprid, or permethrin), especially if you have both cats and dogs in your household.
  • Keep cats indoors and away from stray cats.
  • Immunocompromised individuals should avoid owning cats less than one year of age.

Trench fever, Bartonella quintana

  • Avoid exposure to human body lice. Body lice are typically associated with conditions of crowding and limited access to proper personal hygiene.
  • Do not share clothing, beds, bedding, and towels used by a person who might have body lice.
  • Information about treating body lice is also available.

Carrión’s disease, Bartonella bacilliformis

  • Use repellents and protective clothing to avoid sand fly bites in areas where Carrión’s disease is common (South America). If possible, limit outdoor activities at dawn and dusk, when sand flies are most active.