Do people really love cats? Or are they actually compelled to by brain parasites?

So here’s a weird thought- Cat Lovers are Cat Lovers not always because they naturally love cats, but because they’re actually compelled to be close to cats by a parasite they’ve picked up which is affecting their brains. Scary, eh?

Impossible? Not at all, from the article:

Why is it that the elite French perfumers (known as “noses”) and sommeliers (“upturned noses”) of the world spend so much of their time inhaling cat effluvia from expensive glass bottles? A guess: It may have to do with a mind-control parasite called Toxoplasma gondii. The tiny protozoan may be getting into our brains and tricking us into liking cats—not to mention certain perfumes and wines.

In a recent study, Czech scientists gave men and women towels scented with the urine of various animals—horses, lions, hyenas, cats, dogs—which they rated for “pleasantness.” Turns out, men who tested positive for Toxo found the smell of cat urine more pleasant than men without Toxo. For Toxo researchers like me, this was a shock but not entirely surprising. Why? Toxo does approximately the same thing to rats.

via Chanel No. 5: A brain parasite may be the secret to the famous perfume. – Slate Magazine.