Cuddles each day help keep cat sneezes away

By Connie Orcutt • Published: January 1st, 2016
Category: Animal Airwaves

As cat parents, you’re focused on the health of your feline friends. But did you know that cuddling with your cat can boost its ability to fight infection?

Cats are prone to bacterial and viral upper respiratory infections, and their frontline defense is an antibody called immunoglobulin [immune-O-glob-U-lin] A, or IgA [each letter is pronounced: I-G-A]. Studies in people have shown that relaxation stimulates the production of IgA, thus helping to reduce the incidence of respiratory infections.

Veterinary researchers set out to see if the same held true for cats. In a recent study, shelter cats subjected to several daily sessions of petting, grooming and playtime over a period of months produced more IgA and developed fewer respiratory infections than their non-cuddled counterparts.

So coddle your feline friend with abandon; it’s merely part of the wellness routine.