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Cat in Contact with Wet FIP. Chances of developing it?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I lost a cat to wet FIP last Friday.

I got my two beautiful birmans, together 2 years ago. They have been together since they were 9 weeks old, I got them when they were 13 weeks.

After Ollie died I cleaned everything that I could - litter tray, bedding etc. They aren't from the same litter although they do share one grand parent. I am also making sure that Murray's stress levels are kept low.

Does anyone know what the chances are Murray, my other cat could also develop this disease? Are there any statistics out there? I have heard that it is usually about 5% of cats sharing a household with a cat that has died with FIP that can also go on to develop this. Starting to get paranoid about any small changes with him incase this ends up developing.

Thanks
post #2 of 10
I'm very sorry for your loss. It must be very hard on you. I hope you can find out about the possibility of FIP developing in Murray....I'll keep my fingers crossed that it isn't possible!
post #3 of 10
The predisposition for developing FIP is individual. The FIP virus itself is NOT contagious! Your remaining cat is probably affected by the same strain of Feline Enteric Corona Virus (FECoV) that for some reason mutated into the FIP virus in your other cat, but that really doesn't say anything at all. About 5% of the cats infected with FECoV will develop FIP due to genetic factors and/or stress.

Your cat is not at greater risk for dying of FIP today than it was before your other cat died of FIP. It's very common that only one cat in a household develops FIP and dies, but the rest of the cats live on completely healthy.

So remember that the main factor is the individual itself and most cats survive FECoV without ever becoming sick at all.
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol View Post
The predisposition for developing FIP is individual. The FIP virus itself is NOT contagious! Your remaining cat is probably affected by the same strain of Feline Enteric Corona Virus (FECoV) that for some reason mutated into the FIP virus in your other cat, but that really doesn't say anything at all. About 5% of the cats infected with FECoV will develop FIP due to genetic factors and/or stress.

Your cat is not at greater risk for dying of FIP today than it was before your other cat died of FIP. It's very common that only one cat in a household develops FIP and dies, but the rest of the cats live on completely healthy.

So remember that the main factor is the individual itself and most cats survive FECoV without ever becoming sick at all.
This is spot on Great post, Sol
post #5 of 10
What about 2 littermates, where one was diagnosed with FIP and passed from it? Is the other cat a carrier of FIP, or does she have a greater chance of developing it? And what about bringing another cat into the home?
post #6 of 10
When I lost Willow to FIP, I worried about Odo, but he has shown no signs of developing it. Even with littermates (which my cats weren't) I would assume that it still depends on their individual immune systems. Some of the scientists have recommended that we wait for 7 weeks to ensure that the corona virus is out of the environment, and they suggest cleaning everything with bleach solution. They may also suggest testing the remaining cat(s) to see if they have cleared the virus. However, I think most of that advice comes from and is directed toward people who own and run catteries that are trying to maintain a coronavirus-free environment. As a pet owner who adopts from a shelter or rescue, I think that most of the cats I'm likely to bring in have already been exposed, so bringing them in before that does not put them at any greater risk. I adopted Zek about 3-4 weeks after Willow died. He's a strong, healthy boy, and his only medical issue is an allergy (which I'm sure he had before I brought him home).
post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by typix View Post
What about 2 littermates, where one was diagnosed with FIP and passed from it? Is the other cat a carrier of FIP, or does she have a greater chance of developing it? And what about bringing another cat into the home?
No one knows exactly how the genetic factor works, but as with all genetics littermates may or may not carry the same genes as the affected kitten. Let me clearify one thing, there are no FIP carriers! Using the term carrier indicates that the cat is contagious and like I said in my previous post, FIP is not contagious. Ther are genetic factors that can predispose a cat to developing FIP but that doesn't mean that the littermates of an affected kitten definately are predisposed to develop FIP.

Bringing a new cat into the home shouldn't be a problem but you might wanna wait a while (stress may cause FECoV to mutate into the FIP virus). The Swedish Agricultural Department recommends a 6 week quaratine for pet homes who have been affected by FIP. For catteries, shelters and other multicat households there might be reasons to be extra cautious though since the stress level generally is higher in such facilities.

FIP causes a lot of uncalled for worry, rumours and hystera. For the regular pet owner affected by FIP I usually recommend this:
1. Breathe! Take it easy.
2. Don't do anything! Try to go on living like you used to. Take care of the cats you have left (if you have any) but don't worry yourself to death about them. Don't bring home any new cats, don't travel with the cats... simply don't put them through any unnecessary stress.

The very best way to prevent FIP is to reduce stress, love your cats and feed them well.
post #8 of 10
Thanks for the explanation. it's amazing how many different opinions there are on this, including from vet to vet. My vet is the one who told me my other cat could be a 'carrier'. She also said it would be wise not to get another cat EVER.

That makes me sad, because my remaining cat is almost 11 months, very active and very healthy. But I wonder if she's lonely, and would benefit from having another cat around. It's been about 7 weeks since her littermate died from FIP. Although, the diagnosis came from a history of symptoms and a biopsy, and not an autopsy. I don't know if that means there was a possibilty she didn't have it or not.
post #9 of 10
i lost my boy to wet FIP last october, i'm so sorry that you have been through this, it is so painful to watch them deterioate. i had 2 other cats at the time too and adopted shinobi a month later. everything has been fine.

i think the advice you have been given is excellent on this thread. give yourself and murray some time to recover and then think about getting a friend for him. i would think that as he has always had ollie with him that he would need to have another cat around at some point.
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by typix View Post
Thanks for the explanation. it's amazing how many different opinions there are on this, including from vet to vet. My vet is the one who told me my other cat could be a 'carrier'. She also said it would be wise not to get another cat EVER.

That makes me sad, because my remaining cat is almost 11 months, very active and very healthy. But I wonder if she's lonely, and would benefit from having another cat around. It's been about 7 weeks since her littermate died from FIP. Although, the diagnosis came from a history of symptoms and a biopsy, and not an autopsy. I don't know if that means there was a possibilty she didn't have it or not.
There are so many misconceptions on FIP, not only among cat owners but sadly even among veterinarians. I know cases where veterinarians have recommended breeders to rehome or even euthanize ALL of their cats due to one case of FIP. There are absolutely no scientific ground to such drastic recommendations.

There's a great summary on what todays scientific researchers know about FIP here (PDF).

The preface says a lot about this disease:
Extensive research efforts worldwide has led to a new understanding of Feline Coronavirus (FCoV) infection and FIP but has produced an even greater number of questions that remain unanswered. Currently there is no effective prevention or treatment for FIP. Equally, there is no method of accurately predicting which cats are at risk of developing the disease. The invariably fatal consequences, lack of predictable disease patterns, ineffective treatment regimes and the significant emotional and financial impact of FIP makes it a formidable disease.

Every vet that works with cats should read this report. This report can save lives.
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