Overview of Feline Leukemia (FeLV) and Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)

Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus are two infectious retroviruses that exist in cats. In cats, these two viruses cause more disease and mortality than any other infectious virus.

(1) Feline leukemia virus transmission and infection process Feline leukemia virus can be transmitted horizontally or vertically. Among them, vertical transmission is mainly when the infected female cat passes the virus to the next generation in the womb or when the kitten is breastfeeding after birth. Horizontal transmission is caused by contact between uninfected cats and already infected cats due to saliva, tear ducts, urine or feces. For example, sharing food, water basins, and combing each other's hair may cause horizontal transmission of the virus. FeLV symptoms vary from mild to severe. The most common symptoms are: weight loss, poor appetite, and listlessness. Physical examination usually shows dehydration, fever, pale mucous membranes, gingivitis, swollen mucous membranes, or swollen lymph nodes. Laboratory tests usually reveal anemia (lower red blood cell count) or a change in white blood cell count.

(2) The principle of FeLV detection The principle of FeLV is mainly to detect the antigen of the virus. The main method of in-hospital diagnosis is ELISA (enzyme-linked immunoassay). However, recently there are other corresponding detection methods that can detect FeLV, such as colloidal gold technology. IDEXX is currently the only company that uses ELISA technology to detect cat retroviruses in the pet field.

(3) Interpretation of FeLV diagnosis results. Feline leukemia detection can be performed at any age. As mentioned earlier, an infected female cat can spread the virus from the uterus or postpartum breastfeeding or grooming each other's hair. Then, FeLV antibodies in the mother's body will not interfere with the test results. Pre-vaccination of FeLV vaccine will not affect the test results. FeLV vaccine will not affect the status of virus carriers. If the test result is positive, there is still a risk of transmission to other cats. For cats that test positive, vaccination will not stop FeLV or FeLV-related diseases or tumor progression.

(1) Feline AIDS (FIV) transmission and infection process FIV is a retrovirus that mainly spreads horizontally. Although there are reports of FIV spreading vertically, it is still relatively rare. Horizontal transmission mainly occurs through bites. The virus sheds in already infected cats. Although vertical transmission of antibodies in the mother's body can also occur, it will gradually disappear within four months of birth or weaning. Those kittens that are tested positive need to be retested after 6 months to ensure that the kittens will not be positive due to the change in maternal antibodies.

(2) The principle of FIV detection The principle of FIV screening is ELISA. The basis of the screening principle is the detection of anti-FIV antibodies in cat serum or whole blood, and this detection can be put into practice. Cats will generally be positive 2-4 weeks after exposure. IDEXX is currently the only company that uses ELISA technology to detect FIV

(3) FIV diagnosis and interpretation Unlike FeLV, FIV antibodies in the mother's body will affect the test results, which may be related to the potential infection of kittens. However, the current incidence of FIV in cats and the pathogenesis of the corresponding diseases are still unclear. It is recommended to repeat the screening after 6 months of birth for kittens that have a positive test result within 6 months of birth, have been in contact with an already infected cat, or are from a high-risk infection group. If the result is still positive after 6 months, use Western-blot to confirm.

(4) Treatment There is no proven effective treatment method for cats infected with FeLV or FIV. Owners have the right to know whether their pets are carriers of the virus, or are in a positive group or in a dangerous group. Regardless of the test results, the education of the owner is essential to control the spread of these two viruses. Asymptomatic carriers should not be allowed to wander around or come into contact with other cats. It is necessary to test adult cats or kittens before vaccination, because positive cats are used to control and prevent these diseases The essential. The best way to avoid infection is to avoid contact

(5) Which cats need to be checked? 1. Cats currently being vaccinated with FeLV 2. Regardless of whether the previous results are negative, your cat has been or may be in contact with other infected cats 3. Cats that are sick, because FeLV and FIV may be related to certain diseases 4. Those cats living in an environment that may have FeLV and FIV, because these two viruses can exist in the body, but do not have any symptoms for months to several years. 5. The adopted cat is in contact with other confirmed negative cats Need to be tested befor.


Leave a comment