Feline Leukemia and Feline Aids both can mean a death sentence for your cat. They are two of the most common infections in cats that lead to illness and death. Both diseases impair the body’s immune system to such an extent that it is unable to fight even the mildest of infections. There is at present no known cure for either of these diseases. They exist worldwide.
Although caused by different retroviruses, both feline leukemia and feline AIDS are highly contagious. Feline leukemia can involve anemia, thymus gland damage, chronic problems in the digestive system, reproductive problems, and skin lesions. Feline AIDS leads to problems with virtually every organ and system in the cat’s body.
Feline leukemia is contracted from other cats, usually from shared dishes, food, or litter boxes. The diseases are so infectious that even nose-to-nose contact can be deadly. As the disease is spread through the saliva, the smallest sneeze, bite, or even a passing lick, can serve to transmit the infection.
Feline AIDS, or Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, on the other hand, comes from blood transmission. This most frequently happens between fighting males though fights can happen between any cats. It is more rarely passed from mother to kittens through the mother’s milk.
Just because a cat shows no immediate symptoms of either disease, they could possibly be infected as symptoms may not appear for several years. Even without symptoms, victims can infect other cats.
To protect your cat from both feline AIDS and feline leukemia get them vaccinated. There is a combined vaccine that protects them against both diseases. Even if you cat is an indoor cat, the odds are that some day he/her will make his escape into the dangerous outside world. Don’t take the chance. Getting your pet spayed or neutered is a good additional protective measure. It makes them less likely to get the urge to roam, and less likely to fight. Plus, it helps control the inevitable birth of generations of unwanted and neglected felines who suffer daily through no fault of their own.
The early signs of both feline leukemia and feline leukemia may include; diarrhea, fever, seizures, eye problems, mouth sores, swollen glands, weight loss, skin disorders, and recurring infections in the bladder or respiratory system. Remember that these symptoms may not appear for many years.
Cats that are more likely to contract these two diseases include the following.
1. Cats who play outdoors unsupervised.
2. Cats in boarding facilities that are not strict about inoculations.
3. Cats that ever come in contact with other cats.
4. Cats that have ever had a fight.
5. Cats who are escape artists.
6. Kittens of cats who may be infected.
7. Cats that live in groups.
Never take a chance with your pet’s health. Both feline leukemia and feline AIDS are considered fatal diseases. Vaccinate your cats.
* Be assured that these diseases are not contagious to humans. Because of the nature of animals, there is always the possibility of infection around the site of a bite from any animal. Clean and treat animal bites promptly.