I feel guilty as well. What was I thinking adopting a kitten from my local humane society without making sure my indoor cat was protected against everything possible? It was really hard for me to deal with (I really beat myself up about it!) but as time goes by, I don't put all the blame on myself any longer. The HS should have told me about deadly diseases such as this & FIP. This was my first experience and the first I've ever heard of FeLV. I know I would have had my 2 yr old indoor cat vaccinated against leukemia before bringing in any other cat or kitten. All I was focused on was giving a homeless kitten a home. I don't regret adopting him. I totally loved him from day one. However, I do regret not thinking of finding out if my cat at home needed more protection against diseases that to me were unknown. I've learned so much from this experience.

On another note, even though I will have him tested next month (3 mos after last exposure), I plan on having him tested again in Sept (6 mos after exposure). The reason is, it took 6 mos for it to show up in my kitten. But I do think his diarrhea was a sign of his leukemia, but I was told that he was positive for coccidia along with the rest of the litter when he was born. He was tested for FeLV before I had him neutered at 5 1/2 mos and not before that. The HS said the ELISA test was negative. He may not have been shedding the virus or it was too early to detect.

To answer your question, I believe every cat is different. I've read that a cat can show signs (enlarged lymph glands, lethargy, poor coat, less eating) from 3 to 10 days after exposure and still clear the virus. I've also read that some cats test positive on the ELISA 28 days after exposure. My cat never has tested positive ( I had him tested the day my kitten was euthanized, 30 days after, and another 30 days after). I'm still concerned for him since it effects each cat somewhat differently. Just remember that a healthy adult cat has more of a chance of clearing the virus, than a kitten or an elderly cat.

I would write down all your questions/concerns and have your vet go over them with you. My vet did for me and it helped.

Sending positive thoughts your way!

Hang in there Debbie! I'm here for support whenever you need it.
----- Original Message ----- From: "Debbie Bendell" <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, May 20, 2011 12:49 PM
Subject: [Felvtalk] FeLV Transmission - thanks for replies

I am new to this listserv and couldn't figure out how to reply, so I'm
posting a new message.

Thanks for your responses.  I feel a little less stupid and guilty for not
having every cat tested before it joined my household. I have many cats and
the fee for testing is $40, so I can't afford to do them all at once.

Does a cat get noticeably sick when it's first infected?  Three of my cats
have been sick enough to need bloodwork since I adopted Tulo, and they all
tested negative. If a cat is infected by an asymptomatic carrier, will the
newly infected cat also be asymptomatic?

My cats are indoor cats. There is no possible outside source of infection.
I am just baffled at how Tulo could go from alive and healthy to very sick
and dead in one week. I'm also baffled that no other cats have shown signs
of illness.

*You may not change the world by saving one animal, but to that animal it
means the whole world and eventually, saving animals will change the world.*
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