i would suggest you get bernie the rest of his kitten shots, broken up into
two or not as your vet recommends, then re-evaluate at the 3-year point, as
with any other cat: the vaccines really aren't effective against distemper,
at least, without the full kitten series (as too many rescues/sanctuaries
can tell you, thinking that one shot in adulthood would be enough with cats
who came in without their medical records)--and the risks of protecting him
against distemper (a nasty, nasty way to lose a cat) outweigh the limited
risks of appropriate protection.

don't presume that every sniffle or bad day has anything to do with his
having FeLV; FeLV cats are really just normal cats until the virus is
triggered, so they can have bad days just like anyone else can.
additionally, they can get infections and the ickies, be treated, and
recover just as well as any other cat--they can be at death's door from
something, and still be fine after correct treatment. as long as the FeLV
remains inactive. unfortunately, no one really knows for sure yet what
triggers the virus, tho stress and MAJOR illness are the two top
suspects--but sanctuary experience will tell you that the latter isn't
nearly as much a problem. as i said, they get sick, you treat them, they go
on. additionally, because research seemed to have stopped for so long and
just recently have begun again, we really don't have a clue on how many
actually positive kitties ever DO get symptomatic. there is new evidence
that there's a whole class of kitties who don't exactly clear the virus from
their systems, but cease to be contagious AND never progress to symptomatic.
(that research is mentioned in a november or december PetSmart webinar; it's
on their site, but i wasn't able to attend it nor have i had the chance to
download it.... so i can't give more details. i just know that in the
JANUARY webinar, it was referred to a couple of times.)

test your other(s) at 3-1/2 months (you've got a good vet there, since
that's a valid testing interval re: exposure)--then maybe again at one year.
after that, i personally wouldn't bother--the odds are that if kitty isn't
positive after that amount of exposure, either they don't like each other
enough to engage in the kind of close contact required to transmit the
virus, or that the negative kittie(s) have dealt with the virus and
processed it out of their little systems and are now immune. (sanctuary
experiences indicate--again, not enough formal research to prove it, that
once a cat tests positive, then negative on the IFA, they are NOT
susceptible to the other strains of the virus, either--i guess it's possible
that they are constantly reinfected with re-exposure, but because of the
"not sick til it's triggered" element, it doesn't seem to be a problem.
remember, if FeLV were so contagious, the prevalence-in-the-wild percentages
would be MUCH higher, and there would be cats dropping dead all over the
place. and, in sanctuary environments, where you have cats in every stage of
infection, the sick ones SHOULD make the asymptomatic ones sick too, if it's
just a matter of immune-system weakness....

we just have to keep asking the questions, and angling for more research, so
that we can get the answers we need.

my OPINIONS (tho grounded in what is known, and what has been observed) for


On Wed, Feb 18, 2009 at 1:59 PM, Maria Ianiro <mian...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi everyone
> My kitten Bernie was diagnosed with Felv about 2 months after we got him
> home from the shelter.  He was on interferon for 45 days, retested, and is
> still positive.  When we got him from the shelter he did not have his
> second
> set of vaccinations yet. He is now 8 months old.
> I am taking him to the vet tonight to get the shots.  The vet said she
> would
> split up the doses so his body could handle them.  I think I will go back
> in
> 3 weeks and get the rest.  I am still a little nervous about him getting
> the
> shots and becoming sick.
> He was symptom free for about 40 days and then he had a bad day where he
> wouldn't eat.  Otherwise, he has been acting like a normal kitten. No more
> soft stool, good appetite (besides his bad day), good energy.  Still give
> him interferon once a day.
> Has anyone had an experience with the vaccinations? Is there a good chance
> he could die from the shots?  I know he needs them.. but I am nervous about
> it.
> Also, I decided to keep my non Felv cat (Brady) with Bernie. The vet told
> us
> to get Brady re-tested in 3 1/2 months.  He tested negative the first time.
> My question is, how often should you have your non Felv Cat tested? I was
> thinking once a year would be ok? Every 3 1/2 months sounds like too
> much.....
> Thank you!
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Maybe That'll Make The Difference....

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