Feline Leukemia (FeLV) is a viral disease that cats of any age can acquire. Your cat can get this through:
- Birth (mother to offspring transmission)
- Cat to cat transmission through saliva, feces, and urine
When an infected cat comes in contact with healthy one, he could transmit it to the other.
Cure: none at this time. Feline Leukemia can trigger the onset of other deadly diseases such as blood disorders, cancer, diabetes, and respiratory infections. Anemia and bone complications will eventually take place, and these conditions lead to a cat's death. Take note too that a cat with FeLV may die within 3 years, as is the case for 80% of all FeLV-infected cats.
While there is no known cure, we can do something to prevent our cats from getting FeLV. Here are some things you can do.
- The first and foremost thing you need to do is to have your new pet tested for this condition. If results show he has LeLV, you have two options: keep him apart from other cats, or you many decide not to keep him at all.
- Second, as much as possible, keep you cat inside your house. If you let him free to mingle with neighborhood cats, chances are he will acquire FeLV from them.
- Third, make sure to give your cat FeLV shots. You can check with your cat's vet regarding this. However you need to remember that vaccines for FeLV may not be as effective for all cats. For some reason, there are cats that do not become immune to the disease even after vaccination.
What to Do If Your Cat has FeLV
Once you discover your cat has FeLV, you need to have the rest of the cats tested too. Then, separate the infected ones from the healthy ones so as not to have all of them infected.
You will not become infected to FeLV so no need for you to worry, however, if you pet infected cats, make sure to wash your hands with soap before spending time with those who are not infected. Utensils should also be kept separated. If you only have one cat at home, then you should not have to face this problem.
Another important thing you need to do is to ensure your infected cat has a healthy diet, because when he has leukemia, his immune system is compromised.
In the instance that your cat dies from the condition and you decide to adopt a new cat, see to it that you have your house cleaned and sanitized, especially the areas that your sick cat frequented. Though the virus dies in just a matter of hours, you can never be too sure of secondary diseases.