This study was undertaken to determine whether Haemobartonella felis (Mycoplasma haemofelis), the causative bacterial agent of feline infectious anemia, infects nondomestic cats. Routine complete blood count and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) were performed to detect the gene for 16S ribosomal RNA for the organism. Sixty-four blood samples were collected from 54 nondomestic cats, including tigers (Panthera tigris), cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus), lions (P. leo), mountain lions (Felis concolor), snow leopards (P. unica), and a jaguar (P. onca). Some cats were sampled on two or three different dates. Two tigers were positive for H. felis by PCR analysis. As previously described in domestic cats, the parasitemia appears to be intermittent in nondomestic cats.
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Vol. 34 • No. 2