Pine processionary caterpillar Thaumetopoea pityocampa envenomation in 11 cats: a retrospective study.

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Abstract

Objectives The aim of this study was to describe the clinical manifestations in cats of contact with caterpillars of the pine processionary moth. Methods Data were retrospectively obtained from the medical records (2004-2016) of cats that had been in contact with caterpillars of the pine processionary moth. Results Eleven cats were included in the study. The prevalence of lepidopterism was 0.13%. Tongue lesions and ptyalism were both present in 10/11 (90%) cats. Systemic signs consisted exclusively of vomiting and were encountered in 4/11 (36%) cats. The survival rate was 100%. Long-term follow-up data were available for 7/11 cats, and none of the cats showed impaired quality of life or definitive sequelae. Conclusions and relevance The clinical presentation of lepidopterism in cats appears to be similar to that in other animals; however, the clinical signs are less severe than those previously reported, mainly owing to the cautious behaviour of this species. Moreover, the prognosis is excellent, the length of hospitalisation is short (maximum 48 h) and our study showed the absence of any long-term disability after hospital discharge.

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