You really have to decide why you are testing. If a cat is ill with the Mystery 
Illness, of course you need to run some tests to pinpoint what may be the cause 
of the illness. If you are adopting out, you probably should do a combo test 
without the heartworm part which I learned from this list can screw up the 
results of the other tests in the combo. However, if the 4 kittens mentioned 
have tested negative, I don't see any reason why not to adopt out. Because, and 
this is important to remember, the person wanting the kitten or a couple of 
kittens will get a couple of kittens from someone, somewhere and that person 
probably won't test at all, just advertise "free to good home, healthy 
kittens". As long as the test is not definitely positive, you can ethically 
adopt out. I had an FIV+ cat who was not when I took him in. He was negative 
but thin. I polished him up and fattened him up and took him for adoption at 
the Humane Society here and they tossed him
 back to me as FIV+. I retested and sure enough. He had been incubating it for 
the months I had him fattening up and getting ready for his big day. Well, I 
still have Lancelot, mixed in with my regular gang because that's how he was 
when I took him home as a negative and he is still with me about 7 years later. 
Now, I know this is only FIV, not as serious as FeLv but still. You can't 
predict the future as far as will the cat some day turn positive for FeLv. You 
shouldn't spend much needed money testing and re-testing to make all the 
planets line up correctly. My three originally positive FeLv cats who turned 
negative are still with me. If anyone had wanted the ugly mutts, I would have 
cheered and given them away in a nanosecond. But no one wanted a dumb possum 
faced tabby or an all black cat with a sort of snake like face or Percy who had 
an attitude and lost the virus but not the attitude. Lest anyone try to get on 
me for calling them ugly mutts, hey I
 call it like it is. That doesn't mean I don't love them. I love ugly mutts the 
most. Even when they are cats.

Spay and Neuter your cats and dogs and your weird relatives and nasty neighbors 

> From: Lorrie <>
>Sent: Wednesday, August 14, 2013 2:15 PM
>Subject: Re: [Felvtalk] IFA tests/PCR tests
>Margo,  I rescue too, and I've reached the same conclusion as you have.  
>This testing and retesting doesn't let us know what is really going on. 
>It is so discouraging, as well as extremely expensive when you have a
>lot of rescued cats.  Believe me I'd like to stop rescuing too, but what 
>do I do with the 30 cats I have now?  I can't just toss them out, and a 
>shelter means certain death.  So I'm hoping no more cats will come my
>way........ Yeah sure!!
>Thanks for the info from UC Davis........
>On 08-14, Margo wrote:
>> Hi Shelley,
>>         This is coming from a very disgruntled person so take it all with
>>         a grain of salt:)
>>         I have pretty much given up on test results as accomplishing
>>         anything. They seem just about useless in the long run, from my
>>         experience. For many years I ran a rescue in FL. I was fanatic
>>         about testing. Everyone was Elisa tested on intake, and again in
>>         three months, if we still had them. We offered follow-up testing
>>         to adopters. No positives were allowed to leave, and every one
>>         tested negative (both Elisa and IFA) at 3 months. I figured I was
>>         just very, very lucky.
>>         Fast forward. Two years ago I re-tested my whole population. Elisa
>>         negative. All of them. Just after that, I added a new cat. He was
>>         in quarantine for three months. Clean Elisa at both times. In
>>         March, he tested positive, after a very stressful bout of struvite
>>         stones. I was devastated. Now what? Well, since then one more (of
>>         my original household) has tested +. Another is likely. I'm not
>>         re-testing everyone. I'll test as they need to go in for the
>>         complications.
>>         Here's what "Shelter Medicine" (UC Davis) has to say about FeLV 
>> "What additional tests are available?
>>  Cats testing positive by the ELISA test on serum should ideally be
>>  retested either using an ELISA test from a different manufacturer or by
>>  sending the appropriate sample for an IFA test at a diagnostic
>>  laboratory. If both tests are positive, the cat is very likely
>>  persistently infected. To be absolutely certain, cats can be held and
>>  retested after 30 days if resources are available and the cat can be
>>  appropriately housed and isolated (for the protection of the cat and
>>  population; see below). Because the IFA is less sensitive (more prone to
>>  false negatives) than the ELISA test, a negative IFA result in a cat
>>  testing positive ELISA can not be taken as an indicator that the cat is
>>  not infected. If the ELISA test is positive but the IFA results in a
>>  negative result, both tests can be repeated in 30 days.  If this strategy
>>  is used, a plan should be made at the outset and clearly communicated to
>>  staff and foster parents regarding what will happen with cats that test
>>  persistently positive after the 30 day hold. A PCR test can also be run
>>  to help resolve any conflicts in the tests. PCR is very sensitive, so a
>>  negative test result run by a reputable laboratory indicates infection is
>>  unlikely. However, because PCR testing is very sensitive to laboratory
>>  error, correct sample handling and laboratory quality are extremely
>>  important."
>> Even so, the more I read, the less I trust ANY test to be accurate. Seems
>> that whatever the test, somehow there are ways it can prove to be
>> inaccurate.
>> So, I am at a loss. I have four kittens suitable for adoption. All tested
>> negative. All have been vaccinated against FeLV. And yet, they've lived
>> (completely separately, physically) in a positive household. I don't want
>> to subject any adopter to the possibility of the heartbreak of FeLV. So
>> they'll stay. And I quit rescuing, fostering and re-hab.
>> Maybe I'll learn more (or someone else will) and change my mind.
>> Margo
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