When Should A Kitten Be Tested For FIV FeLV?


All cats should be tested for FeLV prior to introducing them into a home, and infection-free cats should be housed separately from infected cats. Food and water bowls and litter boxes should not be shared between FeLV-infected cats and non-infected cats.

How often should a cat be tested for FeLV FIV?

Kittens that test positive for FIV antibodies should be retested every 60 days up to 6 months of age and if the kitten becomes seronegative, it most likely is not infected.

Can you test for feline leukemia at home?

The WITNESS Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV) Antigen Test Kit is an easy-to-use test for the detection of FeLV antigen in feline whole blood, serum or plasma, at the point of care.

Should a cat with feline leukemia be put down?

Most vets agree it is better to humanely euthanize a leukemia positive cat and not to have it die of the illness,” said Ryan Epple, owner of Harmony Animal Hospital. “When dying of the disease, it is a long, slow, and not pleasant death.”

What are the stages of feline leukemia?

There are three primary outcome stages of FeLV infection: abortive, regressive and progressive. 4 Approximately two-thirds of cats exposed to FeLV will experience either the abortive or regressive stage of infection, and about one-third of cats develop progressive infection.

How do you test for feline leukemia?

Your veterinarian can diagnose the disease by conducting a simple blood test called an ELISA, which identifies FeLV proteins in the blood. This test is highly sensitive and can identify cats with very early infections.

How contagious is FeLV?

A cat with FeLV sheds a large quantity of the virus in its saliva, as well as in other bodily fluids such as nasal secretions, urine and feces. However, FeLV is not a highly contagious virus, and transmission generally requires a prolonged period of close contact between infected and susceptible cats.

Which is worse FIV or FeLV?

Feline Leukemia (FeLV) is much more devastating than FIV. This is because FeLV typically results in cancer (e.g., lymphoma), leukemia (e.g., cancer of the bone marrow or circulating white and red blood cells), and severe bone marrow suppression (e.g. anemia) in young cats.

How common is a false positive feline leukemia test?

If you test 1000 cats you will see that 17 out of the 47 cats that test positive do not actually have FeLV. That means that over 36% of positive results are actually false positives. In areas with a prevalence lower than 3% the number of false positives increases.

How do I know if my kitten has feline leukemia?

Signs that a cat has FeLV include:

  1. Loss of appetite.
  2. Weight loss.
  3. Poor coat condition.
  4. Persistent fever.
  5. Inflammation of the gums and mouth.
  6. Skin, urinary, and upper respiratory tract infections.
  7. Persistent diarrhea.
  8. Seizures, behavior changes, and other neurological disorders.

Can you tell if a kitten has feline leukemia?

How do I know if my cat has FeLV? The only way to know if your cat is FeLV-positive is to have your veterinarian run a test called an ELISA. Cats can test positive within a few weeks after exposure, but almost all cats who are positive for the virus will be so by 28 days.

How do indoor cats get feline leukemia?

How Can My Cat Get Feline Leukemia? FeLV is transmitted from other infected cats “shedding” the virus — a time when the virus is replicating in the body and released into the environment through their saliva, nasal secretions, urine, feces, and milk.

What is the incubation period for feline leukemia?

On the other hand, an animal may have a negative test result, even if they have been infected with the virus, if they are tested during the incubation period, which is usually 2 to 4 weeks, but can be as long as 12 months.

How long does FeLV live on surfaces?

Keeping the environment clean can help prevent the spread of FPV and FeLV. Although FPV can be killed in the environment by cleaning with a dilute bleach solution, the virus can live on surfaces for up to 2 years and is resistant to many other cleaning products and disinfectants.

Can a FeLV positive cat live with other cats?

For socialized, owned cats, it is generally recommended that FeLV-positive cats only live in homes with other FeLV-positive cats. (FIV-positive cats can live with other cats who don’t have FIV as long as they get along and don’t fight, causing bite wounds.)

Should FIV positive cats be euthanized?

Cats infected with FIV should never be euthanized, unless they are actually experiencing a severe, debilitating illness that cannot be treated (as we would with any other cat).

How can feline leukemia be prevented?


  1. A vaccine is recommended for all cats at risk of exposure, but the only sure way to prevent transmission is to prevent exposure to infected cats.
  2. Keep your cats indoors, away from potentially infected cats who might bite them.

How expensive is feline leukemia treatment?

Average Cost of Treatment

The average cost to treat feline leukemia virus is about $650-$700. And the average prevention cost is approximately $75.00. However, it can vary depending on the size of your cat, veterinary bills, and the stage of feline leukemia.

Is coughing a symptom of feline leukemia?

Some cats infected with feline leukemia will show no signs at all. When symptoms do occur, they can appear in almost any form. Common symptoms include lack of appetite, lethargy, fever, and weight loss. Respiratory symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, runny eyes, or a runny nose may be seen.

What’s the longest a cat has lived with feline leukemia?

In 2007, the oldest cat with feline leukemia (FeLV) at the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah, was 211/2 years old. She lived a long and extremely happy life. One of the biggest misconceptions about feline leukemia is that it is an automatic death sentence.

What should I do if my cat has a positive FeLV?

How should FeLV-positive cats be managed? Any cat that has tested positive for FeLV should be kept indoors at all times and provided with good nutrition, a low-stress environment, and regular veterinary care.


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