You'll find opinions all over the place on the net. Some vets are very
cautious but then they've probably never had FELV cats - just read the
textbooks and seen the sick cats in their practices.
However, quite a few people on this list do mix, with no problems.
I've done that in the past, still do some. I think healthy adult cats
have enough immunity to deal with the virus, whether vaccinated or
not. But vaccination probably helps boost that immunity.
I also like to use daily low dose oral interferon for FELV+ kitties,
at least up until they're about 3 years old. The ones I've had that
were born with FELV tend to die at about 3 years old. I think the
interferon helps keep the viral load down, and a healthier kitty.
I have a friend who does interferon with her FELV cat - she has 1
positive, and 1 negative, mixed of course. She got them when they
were kittens. Both cats are well over 3 - maybe 6 or 7 yrs old now -
and no problems whatsoever. The vet wanted her to have them retested,
she did and nothing had changed (1 pos, 1 neg).
On Aug 4, 2009, at 12:29 AM, Iva Lark Emily Seaberg wrote:
Thank you everyone for the warm welcome! It was very reassuring to
read all of your posts, especially those with multi-cat mixed
households. I spoke to the vet this morning and she was actually ok
with my decision, but she wants me to keep my positive kitty
isolated for now. She didn't say how long, though I know she is
hoping for indefinitely. We are putting Becca on antibiotics for her
oral inflammation and then steroids, which I know will temporarily
decrease her immune system more but could be worth it in helping her
fight the virus back?
Anyway, here is my dilemna. Currently, Becca is isolated in my
master bedroom/bath. All the cats are unhappy about this. The two
negative kitties sit outside the door and reach their paws under to
her. They meow at me with a clear "Umm, Mom we want our sister
back." and they try and sneak in there. She in turn tries to sneak
out and is seeming a bit down. She's exceptionally affectionate when
we go in there, more so than usual, but she's not eating as much and
seems almost a bit depressed. She kept me up all night trying to
love on me. I also know it is a small space and can get lonely. Now,
I've read what everyone said about stressing her and I don't want to
do that, so here's my dilemna. How long should she be quarantined
for? The negative kitties JUST got their first vaccine on Friday and
won't be at full protection until they get their boosters in 2.5
weeks. Should I keep her in there until at least then? Should I just
let her out now? I really
really want to minimize the negative's risk of exposure because I
don't want them to be infected.
I did read the articles everyone mentioned and it was still unclear
to me where in the articles it says that it is safe to expose a
negative to a positive. It still said they could infect, but no odds
were mentioned, so therefore they should be separated. See below:
"Uninfected cats in a household with infected cats should be
vaccinated; however, other means of protecting uninfected cats (eg,
physical separation) should also be used. Constant exposure to FeLV-
infected cats is likely to result in viral transmission regardless
of vaccination status."
"In ~70% of adult cats, viremia and virus shedding are transient,
lasting only 1-16 wk. A few cats continue to shed virus in
secretions for several weeks to months after they cease to be
viremic. Virus may persist in bone marrow for a longer period, but
even this latent, or sequestered, infection usually disappears
within 6 mo. Some FeLV-exposed cats (~30%) do not mount an adequate
immune response and go on to become persistently (ie, permanently)
viremic. Persistently viremic cats develop fatal diseases after a
variable time period"
What if she's just now in the shedding stage? Is she considered
persisently viremic at this point as she's had gum issues for a few
months? Does that mean she is currently shedding the virus?
I almost wonder if the positives that aren't infecting the negatives
aren't at the viral shedding stage. Is it really safe to expose the
other kitties? Should I keep her quarantined for the next 2.5 weeks
or does it really matter? I'm torn. On one hand I don't want to
stress her unnecessarily, especially when I'm about to have to give
her antibiotics twice a day and steroids twice a day. She is going
to hate that. I don't want her to lose weight either, she's always
been a tiny, dainty thing and she doesn't have any weight to lose!
On the other hand I don't want to infect my other babies and I can't
help but worry that to let her out now, before they have full
vaccine protection at least, much less before the steroids have a
chance to calm her virus down would be to stack the odds against them.
I need advice!
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