Campylobacteriosis is a zoonotic disease which causes enteritis in human, dog, and cat, as well as other domestic and wild animals. The present study aimed to detect of campylobacter infection in companion cats referred to the Veterinary Hospital of the Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz. Risk factors such as age, gender, breed; nutrition status, and lifestyle (open or close environment) were reviewed also. Fecal samples were examined by two methods of culture and PCR from one hundred one of cats (thirty-five diarrheic and sixty six clinically healthy). Only two samples were positive in culture method (1.98%), but Campylobacter species were detected in thirty-seven samples by PCR; which yields an overall prevalence of 36.63%. The most prevalent species of campylobacter among the referred cats were C. upsaliensis and C. coli with 23 and 7 out of 37 identified isolates (62.16% and 18.91%) respectively. A lower prevalence was observed for C. jejuni in four identified isolates (10.81%) and for concurrent infections in two cases (C. coli + C. jejuni) (5.40%) and one case (C. upsaliensis+ C. lari) (2.70%). The prevalence of infection was 57.14% and 25.75% in diarrheic and healthy cats respectively. There was a significant difference for campylobacter infection between the healthy and diarrheic cats in the PCR method, as well as, age, breed; nutrition status and lifestyle showed a significant difference, but there was no significant difference for gender factor in campylobacter infection. In conclusion, because of the frequent presence of campylobacter species in feces of cats, these bacteria can constitute a public health hazard. Accordingly, periodic tests and isolation of diarrheic cats from others are important, especially cats that eat raw meat and live in a shelter.
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