The FIV in cats is one of the most common infectious diseases and, in turn, may suffer more severe than our furry. Especially if they go abroad and / or are not vaccinated, they are very vulnerable.
And the problem is not the infection itself, but the symptoms it produces, how quickly it can get worse, and how contagious – among felines – it is. Read on to know everything about her .
What is it?
FIV, or Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, is a microorganism that, upon entering the cat’s body, destroys or damages the white blood cells or leukocytes , which are cells of the immune system responsible for protecting the animal. As the body runs out of them, little by little it weakens, which makes it possible to have other diseases, such as anemia for example.
Anyway, it is important to know that during the initial phase – it can last from 2 to 4 months – there are not always apparent signs, since the body does everything possible to eliminate the virus, this “battle” being silent. But later we will notice that the furry is not well.
How is FIV spread in cats?
The most common way is through biting , for example during a fight. But if the healthy cat comes into contact with the mucous membranes of a sick one, it can also be infected.
What are the symptoms?
During the early phase it is normal that there are no symptoms . You may have short bouts of fever or enlarged lymph nodes, but these will be mild signs.
Most cats reach the second phase apparently healthy.
During the second phase the symptoms begin to be more and more evident. Fever, malaise, loss of appetite, and / or apathy are just a few of them.
Third and final phase
In the last phase of the disease, the furry ones are very bad . They may have problems breathing normally, rhinitis, gingivitis, diarrhea, skin infection, uveitis, diseases of the nervous system, anemia and / or seizures.
How is the diagnosis and treatment?
To do this, the vet will perform a test to detect it . In case of doubt, he will repeat it or choose to perform virus isolation. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, some medications (such as azidothymidine) will be given to stabilize them.
In addition, they will give them others to help them breathe and stimulate their appetite.
At the moment, there is no cure for IVF in cats.
Can it be prevented?
Yes, although not 100%. A vaccine when they are still puppies can help them to be more protected. Likewise, it is recommended that, if there are cats at home, the pertinent tests are carried out on those who want to be adopted before taking them home.
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