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What is FIV?
FIV stands for Feline Immunodeficiency virus.
Between 2%-4% of cats world wide are affected.
FIV is an infectious disease that attacks the immune system.
Once, this disease use to be a death sentence for cats. In some places, it still is. But thankfully veterinary science has learned, this big bad virus, isn't as scary as we thought.
We have learned that FIV can only be transmitted though very deep bite wounds! The virus itself is incredibly weak, and needs to be injected directly into the blood stream to infect a healthy cat. While it's carried in saliva, it is too weak to break through the mucus membranes to get into the blood stream. This means that that non cat aggressive positive cats, can live safely with negative cats! The virus can NOT be contracted through grooming, sharing bowls, sharing litterboxes, or cuddling.
FIV infected cats also live long healthy lives, as long as they receive normal vet care and are kept up on vaccines!
But we do have to still be realistic, even though the chances of spread in households are VERY low, they do still exist. When integrating a positive cat into your home, take your time! Follow Jackson Galaxy's method for smoother integrations, and listen to the advice of rescue staff! We get to know these cats so well, we can tell you if you are going to have a good match or not.
What is FeLV?
FeLV stands for Feline Leukemia Virus.
Between 2%-3% of cats world wide have contracted it.
FELV is a highly infectious disease that also attacks the cat's immune system.
Second only to trauma, FELV is the leading cause in cat deaths. 85% of cats that contract the disease pass away within the 3 years of initial diagnosis.
This virus is passed via saliva, blood, urine and feces. With this in mind, cats who are negative for FeLV should NOT be homed with those who are positive. This is an incredibly unfortunate disease with no cure, and an easy transfer rate. Grooming and fighting are the easiest ways this virus is transferred.