Unfortunately, since FeLV is a retrovirus that attacks your cat’s immune system, your cat can become ill from many things as a result. This makes looking for a ‘sure sign’ very difficult. Often the immune system is weak so your cat will become chronically infected with certain conditions such as stomatitis, gingivitis, oral ulcers, abscessesContinue reading What are symptoms for which I should be on the lookout?
There is no set time period for how long an FeLV+ cat will live. One person on the internet said they had a cat which lived for 20 years with the virus, while others have given dates as long as 10 or 12 years, although these are probably extremes. I have not found any trulyContinue reading How long does a cat who tests positive have to live?
Unfortunately, yes. Although false negatives are not very common, they do occur, especially if you are dealing with a young kitten. Sometimes the cat has been recently exposed to FeLV, so the antibodies have not yet had enough time to build up enough of a response to appear on the test. To be absolutely sureContinue reading Is it possible for a cat to test negative when it really is positive?
Yes. If you have a cat which tests positive on the ELISA test, you should immediately have an IFA test done. If it tests negative on the IFA test, you should have your cat retested with the ELISA test in 3 months. If a cat does not test negative again in roughly three months, chancesContinue reading So some cats who test positive can later test negative?
Your vet will do a blood test; there are two types of blood tests which can be performed. Some vets will automatically do one of the tests before vaccinating your cat to make sure it is not already positive for the virus. The first (ELISA test) is where the vet takes some of your cat’sContinue reading How is FeLV detected?
This depends on the environment the new cat comes from. If it is a stray, or from a shelter which does not routinely test for the viruses (make sure you ask this of any shelter you visit), or from a household where you have reason to doubt the person has had the cat tested/vaccinated, thenContinue reading I already have a cat(s) and I found another which I want to bring home. What precautions should I take regarding FeLV (and other diseases)?
Some cats do have bad reactions to vaccines. However, it is better to have a cat sick for one day per year from being vaccinated than to have it die a miserable death from an FeLV-related disease. If your cat has a bad reaction to a shot, ANY shot, and the reaction lasts more thanContinue reading My cat gets sick after it gets vaccinations. Why should I put my cat through that?
The answer to this question all boils down to a risk/benefit assessment. If you live in a high-rise, do not plan on moving in the next year, and do not plan on exposing your cat to other cats (such as getting a new kitten, or temporarily housing a stray), then there is really no needContinue reading My cats are indoors-only. Why should I bother getting them vaccinated?
No one can force you to vaccinate your pets, though there are laws in some areas regarding certain diseases like rabies. Check with your vet to see what vaccines are required in your area.
There is always a risk that your cat may have a bad reaction to a vaccine, ANY vaccine. It is a good idea to wait in your vet’s waiting room for 30 minutes after receiving a vaccination, ANY vaccination, to make sure your cat does not have an adverse reaction, and if it does theContinue reading Is there any risk in getting my cats vaccinated?