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My Oreo has FIV

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

I took my male cat to the vet today because he was limping and he needed his vaccinations and they tested him for FIV and he was positive. He was limping because he apparently has a puncture wound in his back right paw. He's an outside cat because I've been unable to keep him inside because of the constant spraying and because he attacks my inside cat . Don't worry though, he's got a good shelter with a heater for the colder months (although I'm in the South and the weather is usually pretty mild, even in the winter).

He was a stray that I adopted last year and he was a big fighter before that so I guess that's how he contracted FIV. The vet suggested trying again to make him an inside cat but I'm worried about my inside cat getting FIV. My vet said that the vaccination isn't 100% effective so my inside cat could still catch it (if she hasn't already). The vet also brought up putting him down. I really don't want to put him down because he's still healthy and I can't imagine doing that. I just don't know what to do. I don't want him to infect all the strays and outside cats in the neighborhood but I also don't want him to infect my inside cat. What do I do? I've been crying all day thinking about this.
post #2 of 15
well first off, I'm sorry that Oreo has gotten this diagnosis, but really, FIV is a very manageable disease, so putting him to sleep is really not necessary my first question is, is Oreo neutered? the answer to that will have a lot to do with any advice I can give
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
yes he's neutered, I had him neutered a year ago when I decided to adopt him. I'm so glad to hear that he doesn't need to be put down, he's the sweetest cat (to people anyways) and he's really not that aggresive anymore since he's been neutered unless a cat enters his territory.
post #4 of 15
I have 12 cats now and 1 of them, Pip, has FIV. It's a little extra work to keep him separate or supervise when he's with the others, but it's well worth it. He's my second FIV+ and the first, Old Tiger, did not spread the virus to any of the others. He passed away about 4 years after I took him in. He was not a young cat and had probably contracted the disease years earlier.

Cats with FIV can live long, healthy lives. Do your homework before you make any decisions.

But yes, I would say that he needs to become an indoor kitty.
post #5 of 15
I have no advice, just !
post #6 of 15
Cinder's right, he really should be made an indoor kitty as he's still aggressive to other kitties, but I would strongly advise keeping him a "safe room" unless you're there to supervise, would hate to see your other kitty contract it. as for the spraying, I can only wish you the best of luck in that department, but it sounds like you really care for Oreo, so putting him down is not an option!
post #7 of 15
I don't know anything about this disease, but it is apparent that you do love Oreo. I am sure you will do whatever you need to do. Please keep us updated on him.
post #8 of 15
No advice just love and kisses towards Oreo, whatever decision you make is I'm sure going to be the right one but my prayers have to be with him
post #9 of 15
I'm so sorry Oreo has FIV. I don't know much about it but there are lots of folks here who do. I'm sure you'll find lots of help and support.
post #10 of 15
Do you know what kind of test the vet used to come to the conclusion that your cat if FIV +??

Many vets use the ELISA test but that has a very high FALSE POSITIVE rates, in my opinion. I've heard quotes that up to 1 in 3 may be false positives.

Any FIV diagnosis should only be made after confirming with a WESTERN BLOT test. The test is more expensive the results tend to take about 5 - 7 days to get back.

If the WESTERN BLOT comes back positive, as well as the ELSIA, then there is a 99% chance that your cat is FIV positive.

I have one FIV cat that I inherited from my mother (along with three others) and it never spread to any of the other cats.

FIV is really spread only one way ---- the INFECTED cat must bite (deeply) the non-infected cat and go into the muscle tissue. If your cat is a tom cat prone to fighting or attacking the other cats, then you should isolate him (after confirming that he is indeed FIV positive).

FIV may be spread from casual contact, but I've heard that is very rare ... I've read some statistics of 1 in 100.

I took my FIV cat (non-symptomatic --- just had run the test prior to bringing all my Mom's cats into my home with my two cats) to a cat specialist (Board Certified Feline vet). He told me REPEATEDLY that FIV is NO BIG DEAL (verbatum quote from him).

He said there is no reason that this six yr old cat couldn't live to be 15 years old.

What tends to kill FIV cats is not FIV itself but secondary infections ... their immune systems are weak and things other cats can fight off easily, they can't. He said that you can't assume the cat will get over something ... to bring her into the vet at the first sign of sickness and get started on antibiotics right away, if warranted.
post #11 of 15
FIV is NOT a death sentence. THese cats may be more prone to other diseases like dental disease or certain cancers, but can live to or close to the normal lifespan for cats. FIV+ should ABSOLUTELY be indoor cats. There are methods to working with spraying...have you tried confining him? Have you tried Feliway> Have you contacted a feline behaviorist? He'll need well-checks every 6 months and the vet may want to prescribe anti-retrovirals or immune-supporting drugs. If he's outside, he could infect other cats. The ONLY ways FIV is spread are through blood to blood, saliva to blood (so deep bite wounds) or sexual contact/in utero, which won't be a problem if he's neutered and you other cat is neutered.
post #12 of 15
You need to test the other cats in the household to see if they have it. If they don't then watch how he behaves with them. If he bites them or gets in any fights then...... either find him a loving home/rent him to a barn for use as a mouser or put him to sleep. Its sad if it has to come to that but you dont want him giving the disease to your other cats It probably wont be nesscary but do be careful
post #13 of 15
My Yeller is FIV+. He is the only one among the 15 cats that are now living in my home. I have some lysine gel on hand for him which is to boost the immune system and help him fight off colds, etc.

I've heard that some people consider this a death sentence, but I find that ridiculous. He is a healthy, large, loving neutered male cat and will always have a place in my home.

One thing the vet stressed is that it's important for him to have all his vaccines, (incl' FeLuk), kept up to date to help protect him.

It's kind of funny.... he is the oldest and largest cat in the house.
post #14 of 15
My RB kitty, Fred, had FIV, and he lived to be 18. He was my alpha, but he never fought with or bit any of the others, and none of the cats that we had during the time he was with us ever contracted it. He was a happy, healthy kitty until about 2 weeks before he passed away, then he went downhill pretty fast. The vet said he thought his old heart just gave out, and was not at all sure it was connected to being FIV+.
I wish Oreo the best, and I am very glad you chose not to have him put down.
post #15 of 15
I am so sorry about your Furbaby Oreo, I will pray for him.
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