Australian cat breeders at risk from Q fever pathogen: study

CAT breeders have emerged as a new occupational group at risk from Q fever in Australia, a conference has been told.

University of Sydney researchers say domestic cats and dogs are carriers of the pathogen Coxiella burnetii but cats in breeding catteries are 17 times more likely than others to be seropositive.

Historically, Q fever has mostly affected male farmers and abattoir workers exposed to cattle, sheep or goats but increasingly cases are turning up in people who have unrelated occupations.