Can my cat give me diarrhea?

Yes, your cat can give you diarrhea (diarrhoea) but it is rare and the conditions are very specific. It also depends on how hygienic you are in handling cat litter and how aware you are in respect of these basic zoonotic diseases. Humans can also give you diarrhoea just for the record and the chances are much higher for a human-to-human transmission, I suspect.

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

Cryptosporidium. This is a stylised image for effect. Image in public domain in my view.

Diarrhea can be caused by the protozoans (single celled organisms) cryptosporidiosis (a tiny parasite called Cryptosporidium) and giardiasis according to Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.

Cryptosporidiosis can also cause vomiting, fever, abdominal cramps and dehydration in cats and people. Direct contact with the faeces of domestic cats infected with ‘Cryptosporidium organisms can lead to transmission of this disease’ (i.e. transmission from cat to human).

Your cat has to have this disease first and therefore an examination of your cat’s faeces could be done by your veterinarian. The usual common sense procedures such as wearing gloves while handling substances contaminated with faeces and washing hands afterwards should prevent the transmission.

Useful links
Anxiety - reduce it
FULL Maine Coon guide - lots of pages
Children and cats - important
Giardia parasite

Giardia parasite. Image in public domain – Wikipedia.

Giardia are also tiny parasites causing giardiasis. It can infect cats and other animals. It is passed in faeces. It is spread to other animals and the human-animal via surfaces, uncooked foods and water sources contaminated with giardia.

IMPORTANT: cats are rarely the source. It is normally wildlife or farm animals according to Cornell.

That pretty much answers the question succinctly. Ask your vet for more information if you are concerned. Vets should always be the central source of information of this kind.

Some pages on diarrhea in cats

I believe that modern Siamese cats can have weakened immune systems which can shorten lifespans

Do Siamese cats have sensitive stomachs?

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Antibiotics can cause diarrhea in cats

Can antibiotics cause diarrhoea in cats?

You could ask the same question about humans, dogs or other animals. And certainly, antibiotics can cause diarrhoea in cats ...
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Infographic on 'Characteristics of cat diarrhoea'

Infographic guide on the characteristics of cat diarrhoea

This is an infographic guide for cat sh*t shovelers ??. Full-time indoor cats and some indoor/outdoor cats use litter trays ...
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Sphynx from Russia bred and photographed by Dana Danilova Sphynx Cattery Dani Danati

Sphynx cats producing nightmarish amounts of smelly slushy poop

On my travels through the Internet today I have bumped into what appears to be a huge problem with Sphynx ...
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Diarrhea is a symptom

What’s the best food for a cat with diarrhoea?

A cat owner on the website is asking the question in the title. I'm going to respond to her ...
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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

Note: sources for news articles are carefully selected but the news is often not independently verified.

Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 74-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare. If you want to read more click here.

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