Are you troubled about your cat has feline leukemia? Do you suspect any symptoms and want to confirm them? This guide is the best document for you to know what you need for your cat immediately.
Feline leukemia is one of the major causes of death in cats. It is said to be second only to cancer to claim the lives of sweet kitties. In this blog, you will learn a great deal about the notorious disease, from its causes to treatment, and will be in a better position to take care of your pleasant pet.
Feline leukemia is a virus that only affects cats and cannot live long outside of the body. Though it takes a few weeks of exposure for a cat to adopt the virus, it can bring a serious situation once affected. Moreover, while adult cats have a tendency to resist and keep the virus away, kittens can be affected after a few weeks of continuous exposure.
Types of Feline Leukemia
There are three types of feline leukemia disease: FeLV-A, FeLV-B, and FeLV-C. A is present in all affected cats, B is usually found in around half of the affected cats and C is the least common, yet most dangerous. An infected cat may have from one to all three types of the disease at the same time.
A Common Misconception
Sometimes feline leukemia is confused with cancer because leukemia is a kind of cancer in humans. In cats, it is just a virus.
How Does a Cat Get the Virus?
Feline leukemia is not a zoonotic disease; hence humans don’t need to be scared if their cat is found having it. However, the spread of the disease is caused by the cats themselves. The virus is present in the fluids of an infected cat, like their saliva, blood, urine, milk, tears, etc. Cats that spend most of their time at home are not very likely to catch the virus. On the other hand, cats roaming outside have a very high rate of the feline leukemia infection.
What to Note – Symptoms?
A cat infected with the feline leukemia virus may show many indications of having the virus, but not necessarily. Some cats do not show any of them. Nevertheless, some common symptoms of the disease are:
· Gums becoming a little pale, which may not be clearly visible. As the infection gets serious, the symptom becomes prominent.
· Mouth and eyes changing color. The mouth may get yellowish and there may be more whiteness in the eyes of the cat.
· Skin and respiratory tract infections.
· Laziness and lethargy.
· Difficulty breathing and fever.
· Reproductive problems.
· Oral diseases like stomatitis.
· Weight loss.
How is it Diagnosed?
A cat has to undergo a series of feline leukemia tests to confirm the presence of the disease because there can be false positive results for the test.
If the initial feline leukemia test is positive in a cat, it usually means the disease is there, but it still needs to be confirmed through a series of tests performed at a laboratory.
How to Prevent?
Feline leukemia virus can hardly be eliminated once it has reached its prey. Therefore, kittens are given vaccines to prevent from FeLV at ten weeks of age. Vaccines are available, which are effective to prevent or hinder the spread of the virus.
What If Your Cat Has It Too?
It’s not inevitable that an affected cat will die or suffer seriously. Proper management and minimal exposure to the virus can keep a cat living a healthy life. Along with that, make sure that your cat doesn’t live with other cats or fight with them. Avoiding cuts and wounds that invite parasites is very important. If these things are taken care of, your cat has more chances of staying happy and healthy with you.
Other Common Viral Diseases in Cats
Other than feline leukemia, cats commonly suffer from a few more viral diseases like feline distemper, feline calicivirus, and feline herpes.
These viral diseases can range from ordinarily harming a cat to bringing sudden seizures. It is highly advised to get a check-up for your cat whenever you notice something strange in her physical appearance like weight loss. Cats are not very strong inside to retaliate against such diseases for very long without proper management. These delightful pets need some extra time and attention from their owners in order to stay healthy.