Feline Leukaemia Virus in Cats: Signs, causes, diagnosis and treatment of THIS disease

Feline Leukaemia Virus or FeLV virus can only affect cats causing anaemia, lymphoma etc. in them. It can also damage the immune system. Here’s everything you should know about this issue.
Feline Leukaemia Virus in Cats: Signs, causes, diagnosis and treatment of THIS diseaseFeline Leukaemia Virus in Cats: Signs, causes, diagnosis and treatment of THIS disease
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Feline leukaemia virus is one of the leading causes of death among cats that can kill your furry friend within three years of its diagnosis. Primarily, this virus causes anaemia or lymphoma, but since it also weakens their immune system, it can also cause several deadly infections in them. 

 

But 70 percent of the cats can also survive this disease eliminating all infections caused by it. That is possible only with the right treatment. So, cat owners should know about its signs, causes and treatment to cure their little friends.

 

Feline leukaemia virus in cats.

 

Transmission of FeLV virus

Feline leukaemia virus can only affect cats and cannot be transmitted to humans, dogs or any other animal. It generally spreads in cats through saliva, blood, urine and faeces. This virus cannot survive for long outside a cat’s body. Fighting amongst cats is a common reason for the spread of the virus. Kittens can also be affected through infected mother’s milk. 

 

Risk factors in cats 

When cats are exposed to a FeLV infected cat, then they are likely to get infected with the virus as well, especially kittens and young adult cats. But it cannot weaken an older cat that much because of their strong resistance power or immune system. Cats who live indoors only have low risks of getting infected with this virus. 

 

Symptoms of Feline leukaemia virus

These are the symptoms of this disease:

1.Pale gums.

2. Mouth and white portions of eyes get yellow.

3. Enlarged lymph nodes.

4. Bladder, skin and upper respiratory infection.

5. Weight loss.

6. Appetite loss.

7. Weakness.

8. Poor condition of the coat.

9. Fever and diarrhoea.

10. Breathing problem.

 

Diagnosis of feline leukaemia virus

This virus is diagnosed by a blood test called ELISA that identifies the FeLV proteins in the blood. Many cats can clear the virus within a few months, so they can test negative in this. Next test, IFA, is done to detect the progressive phase of the virus. Cats who test positive at this test cannot clear the virus. 

 

Treatment of Feline leukaemia virus

Generally, cats live for three years after the diagnosis of this virus. But with the right treatment, check-ups and care they can get relief from this infection. Yearly examinations for twice, laboratory testing, parasite control etc. can prevent complications in this condition. FeLV virus-infected cats should be kept indoors. Currently, there is no cure for Feline leukaemia virus in cats. 

 

Prevention tips for cats

There is no cure for this disease, but you can prevent this virus and protect your kitty from getting affected by it. These are some of the prevention tips for FeLV virus:

1. Keep your cats indoors and away from infected ones. 

2. Vaccines can be given to cats with a high risk of exposure. Ask your vet for this. 

3. The test should not be conducted before 30 days after the exposure. Because according to vets, only sick cats should be tested. 

4. Kitties of 8 weeks of age or above should be tested before being introduced to other cats in the house. 

 

DISCLAIMER: It’s always recommended to consult your vet regarding this issue.

Also Read: Purring in Cats: What are the reasons for them to rumble?

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