How to Prevent Cat FIV

Cat FIV Microscopic Sample in Lab

Have you ever heard of cat FIV? You need to!

FIV, or Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, is an incurable virus found all over the world.

In the U.S. alone, approximately 3% of the healthy cat population are infected and over 15% of sick cats become infected each year.

Although, those numbers may not seem very high, keep in mind that these percentages only came from the cats reported to have this condition. Who knows how many cats are suffering from FIV silently and have not been taken to their veterinarian?

 Cat with One Eye Positive with FIV

To make matters worse, FIV is a slow-acting virus meaning your cat could be suffering from this virus for years and you many not even know it!

The only way a pet owner can know if their cat has FIV before symptoms arise is through a specific blood test. Without this blood test, you have no idea of the kind of viral monsters hiding in your poor cat’s body.

You love your cat. Don’t let her get infected. Learn how to prevent cat FIV today.

What is FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus)?

Feline Immunodeficiency Virus is comparable to the human viral infection HIV. FIV is a lentivirus, meaning it is a virus that slowly spreads through the body, attacking the immune system.

The immune system is the body’s own personal body guard, working to keep viruses, bacterial and other harmful substances from harming the body. If the immune system is weakened, like in the case of a FIV infection, the feline is more prone to becoming ill.

There is no cure for the Feline Immunodeficiency Virus and treatment for this condition is only meant to improve the quality of life for the feline.  

How do I know My Cat Has FIV?

The biggest problem with FIV is that a cat could become infected with the virus and pet owners won’t know it until years later. By the time symptoms do appear, the condition continually becomes worse and the battle of your cat’s health will be prolonged for years.

If you note any of the following FIV symptoms in your cat, have your feline examined as soon as possible:

  •       Change in behavior
  •       Polyuria, or frequent urination
  •       Discharge from the nose and eyes
  •       Sneezing
  •       Wounds that never heal
  •       Hair loss
  •       Reddening of the skin
  •       Dental disease
  •       Stomatitis, or mouth inflammation
  •       Gingivitis, or gum inflammation
  •       Conjunctivitis – inflammation of abnormal appearance of the eye
  •       Diarrhea
  •       Poor appetite
  •       Dull and listless fur
  •       Decrease in weight
  •       Anemia
  •       Fever
  •       Lymph node enlargement

How Are Cats Infected with FIV?

The Feline Immunodeficiency Virus is passed from cat to cat through bites. These bites that transmit FIV are deep wounds, like those commonly found after territorial fights between males.

The virus can also be passed from an infected mother to her kittens during birth or nursing.

Two Cats with FIV in Shelter

FIV is a blood borne pathogen, meaning the blood is infected, therefore a cat can also be infected by coming in contact with blood containing the virus.

Who is at Risk?

Any feline can become infected with FIV, but indoor cats that never leave the house are less likely to develop this virus because they almost never come in contact with another cat.

However, if your house cat goes outside, wanders around town or is primarily an outside cat, he or she is at a higher risk. The most cat veterinarian see enter the office with FIV are male cats who fight with other tom cats.

Can I Get Infected with FIV?

No. The Feline Immunodeficiency Virus can only be transmitted from cat to cat.

How is FIV Managed?

As recently stated, FIV is not curable and the cat’s condition is simply managed. FIV weakens the cat’s immune system, making her more susceptible in developing other infections.

To prevent her from getting sick, cat owners should have her vaccinated from other viruses, keep her indoors and isolate her from other felines.

Grey Cat FIV Positive at Vets

Your veterinarian may help to relieve your cat of FIV symptoms by prescribing an immunomodulatory drug, a medication that works with the immune system.

One type of antiviral, immunomodulatory drug commonly prescribed is Interferon.

Cats that do not respond well to drug therapy may require dietary supplements containing high calorie levels, transfusions of blood (a process in which blood is given through an intravenous line to restore blood that has been lost) and intravenous fluid therapy (fluid given to the cat through the veins to restore hydration).

How Can I Prevent FIV in My Cat?

1. Have your cat vaccinated for the FIV.

2. Keep your cat indoors or discourage them from leaving the yard.

3. Don’t let your cat outside at night. Your cat is more likely to become infected at night than during the day because cats are naturally nocturnal, meaning they are more active during the night than in the day.

4. Have your male cat neutered. Cats which are not neutered, the process of removing reproductive organs to prevent reproductively, will not fight with other cats and are less likely to roam the countryside.

5. Keep stray cats away from your pet. A stray cat is more likely to carry the virus than pet cats, so it is advised to report strays to the local animal control agency or shelter.

Sick Cat Going to the Vet in Carrier

Feline Immunodeficiency Virus is a scary condition that could infect any cat at any time, but you have an advantage. Learning how to prevent FIV in your cat can help keep your perfect feline from a lifetime of suffering.

Don’t take the chance of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus coming in between you and your cat’s lives.

Talk to your veterinarian about an effective preventative plan for you and your cat today.

Dog Shedding and Sitting on a Red Rug

How to Control Dog Shedding

Does your dog shed? Learn how to control their shedding!

10 Adoption Stories Guaranteed to Put a Smile on Your Face

If you love dogs, chances are you love a good dog adoption story! These ten stories are ones that I experienced first hand while working at animal rescues and shelters over the last eight years. They may make you laugh, cry, smile or a little of each, but they are guaranteed to warm your heart!…

Long Haired Beauties, What’s the Best Long Haired Cat Breed?

Are you looking to add a long-haired cat to your family, but aren’t sure which breed is right for you? Look no further because I’ve got you covered, from the Brachycephalic Persian to the dainty Turkish Angora there is a long haired cat out there for every personality type. Persian: One of the oldest cat…

Pug Smiling at Dog Park

Here’s How to Find a “Good” Dog Park!

Learn the insider secrets of finding the best dog park possible!

Dogs Walking on Path

How to Spot the Signs of Discomfort and Stress in Dogs

Do you know when your dog is stressed out or in discomfort?

Two Turtles Sunbathing on a Rock

How to Choose the Turtle for You

Turtles come in all shapes and sizes, with different living environments and dietary needs that you will need to be prepared to accommodate.

Pitbull Laying Out on the Beach

How to Rent a Dog for a Day

Want a furry friend, but don’t know if you can make the commitment just yet ?

Dog From a Painting Chewing on a Page from a Book

BO-ZING! 8 Most Popular Dogs in Literary Fiction

Even though Spot was used in the early 1930s to teach kids the fundamentals of reading, he certainly isn’t the only canine to find his way into a good book.

Dog Drinking Water out of Fountain

How Much Water Should Your Dog Really Drink?

It’s important for us to know what is and what isn’t normal for our pets.

Neapolitan Mastiff Outside in the Yard Protective Dog Breed

The 10 Most Protective Dog Breeds

These 10 breeds are all known for their dedication to their owners and their willingness to protect them.

Dog Playing with Pink Toy on Bed

Is Your Dog Possessive Over their Toys?

It’s normal for young pups to be a bit possessive over their toys…

Pug with Wrinkles on Face by Seaside

How to Clean Your Dog’s Skin Folds

The wrinkly faces of the Pug, Bulldog, Shar Pei and other brachycephalic breeds are adorable, but they also require regular cleaning.

Cat Profile in Plane Looking out Window

How to Fly with Your Cat

You have to give yourself plenty of preparation before you and your cat are ready to go jet set off on a plane somewhere.

Pug with Flowers in His Face

10 Dangerous Things in Your Yard for Your Dog

Have you taken a good look at your yard to be sure that everything is safe for your furry friends?

Chow Chow Least Obedient Dog Cover

Watch Out! The 10 Least Obedient Dog Breeds

Every dog can be trained, but some are simply a little less motivated than others.

Two Greyhounds Laying in the Backyard

How Long Should You Leave Your Dog Alone?

There is no short answer to this question as many factors can affect it.

Black Cat in Litter Box Newspaper on Wall

Why Should You Clean the Litter Box so Frequently?

Keeping your cat’s litter box clean is extremely important to her psyche as well as her health.

Millennials Spoil their Pets Jack Russell Sleeping

How Millennials are Changing Pet Parenthood

Millennials are putting off big life events like getting married and having children.
Instead, they’re having fur babies.

What Size Dog Should You Choose Dog Reading Self Help Book

What Size Dog is Best for You?

One thing that you definitely need to consider is size.

Puppy in Training to be a Guide DogPuppy in Training to be a Guide Dog

How to Train Your Dog to Become a Guide Dog

Dogs have been helping humans for hundreds of years, so it’s no surprise that one common job for dogs is guiding the blind.

White Albino Labrador

How to Train a Deaf Dog—It’s Easy!

Luckily, training a deaf dog isn’t so different from a fully-abled dog.

White Great Dane Laying on the Couch

Why are White Coated Dogs Deaf?

Deafness affects white coated dogs, but not all white coated dogs are deaf.

Sheep Dog with Matted Fur in his Eyes

How to Get Mats out of Your Animals’ Fur

Mats in fur are an issue that many dogs face, especially shaggy ones.

Pitbull out in the Summer Sun

How to Prevent Your Dog From Overheating

It’s up to us. Our dogs don’t know when they’re overheating.

Three Greyhounds Sleeping in Dog Beds in Family Room

April is Adopt a Greyhound Month! 50 Amazing Facts about Greyhounds

The Greyhound, the professional sleeper.

Black Cat on Window Sill

7 Myths about the Black Cat and Why You Should Have One

Black cats are famous for “bad luck.”

Small Brussells Griffons Eating in Kitchen in a Line

What is Food Aggression and How Do You Stop It?

A useful response in the wild, but not so much in the home.

Yellow and Black Snake

How to Help Your Snake Shed his Skin

Shedding skin is a natural process for all reptiles.

German Shepherd Dog with Green Backpack on Back

The Top 10 Dog Traveling Gear Must Haves

Luckily, you don’t need to bring a ton of things.

Two Dogs Hike in Los Angeles

Love Traveling? Countries to NOT Travel With Your Dog To

Watch out for Belarus.

Dog Eating a Treat

Yum. Yum. Yum. Can Dogs Eat Sugar?

We love sweets, but can our dogs eat them, too?

Pitbull Looking up at the Camera

Going Out of Town? Best Pet Sitters in Atlanta

Going out of town and need someone to watch your dog?

Maine Coon Backlit by the Sunset

Feline Monsters: Norwegian Forest Cat vs. Siberian Cat vs. Maine Coon

Not only are these cats’ big, their personalities are larger than life, too.

Boston Terrier by Water

French Bulldog vs. the Boston Terrier: What’s the Difference?

To the untrained eye, French Bulldogs and Boston Terriers could be the same breed

Labradoodle Hybrid Dog with Tongue Out

Why Do People Want Hybrid Dogs?

They’re cute and they’re…healthier?

Two Cats on the Floor Bonding

5 Reasons Why You Should Adopt an Older Cat

Adopting an older cat is a great way to get an amazing cat without all the work of kittenhood.

Black Cat Outside on the Lawn

10 years? 15? How Old Do Cats Live?

Cat’s have nine lives, but how long are those lives?

Grey and White Cat with Green Eyes

How to Prevent Cat Bladder Infections

Bladder infections are the number one reason cats visit the vet.

Dog on Hillside in San Francisco, California

The Top Dog-Friendly Cities in the U.S.

How can you go wrong with a pub-crawl with your dog?

German Shepherd with Pointed Ears

What is Schutzhund and How Do You Train Your Dog for it?

This sport has withstood the test of time.

Dog International in England Shakespeare House

Your Introduction to Traveling Abroad with Your Dog

Going to a new country with your dog can be a great experience.

Brown Horse with Black Mane Trotting in Dirt

How to Manage Chronically Infected Wounds in Horses

This can be a scary thing, because infections can eventually lead to the horse’s death if left untreated for too long.

Alusky Hybrid Frozen in the Snow

The Alusky—the Hybrid of Two Great Arctic Breeds

One portmanteau that doesn’t get the recognition it deserves—the Alusky.

Two Dogs with Tongues out with Separation Anxiety

How to Beat Your Dog’s Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is a well-known problem for many pet parents.

Alaskan Malamute Standing in the Mud

65 Fun Facts About the Alaskan Malamute

They’ve lived alongside humans for thousands of years.

Egyptian Mau on Cat Tree

Where Do Different Cat Breeds Come From?

There are over 70 specific recognized breeds…that’s a lot of cats.

Alaskan Malamute Outside in the Snow

Your Go-To Guide to Snow Dog Breeds

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow…

Girl Waving at Computer

10 Ways to Build a Strong Relationship with Your Dog

Not sure how to help your pooch feel more appreciated?

Siberian Cat Profile Outdoors

How to Read Cat Body Language

There are many tell-tale signs to indicate Kitty’s mood.

White American Eskimo by the Lake

What are the Top 10 Dog Breeds that Shed the Most?

Did you know that a dog’s coat serves three distinct purposes?