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Feline Herpes Virus (FVR) Advice

post #1 of 44
Thread Starter 

My little man has FVR and has had a lot of breakouts. His eyes get this cloudy look to them and he has trouble seeing, and sometimes he even gets these dark marks in his iris. We have pet insurance and his meds are super cheap, but the problem is he hates the carrier (he broke the door off and made his paws bleed last time). He doesn't adjust well to change is very neurotic, so trips to the vet are awful. Plus, when I have to give him his eye medication he will run from me and hide. I have to give the eye drops 3x a day for 10 days every time he has a breakout and it makes him hate me. I have to wrap him in a blanket to give them to him or he attacks me and every time I move he will run to hide (even if he just had the drops). This continues for a couple of weeks after I stop giving them to him too and his sister reacts the same way because she can't handle him being stressed either. 

 

Does anyone else have a cat with FVR and if so, how do you deal with the breakouts? Is there anything I can do to help prevent them or at least cut down on the number of occurrences? 

 

Any advice or resources would be awesome!

post #2 of 44

One of my kittens has an eye infection that may be herpes as I cannot get it to go away.  She also gets eye drops and runs away all the time.  I've been giving her wet food for the past week and treats after the drops.  She doesn't like me wiping her eyes but has gotten resigned to it.  I try to do the drops in the kitchen but also give the treats in the kitchen so she doesn't think of the kitchen as a bad place.

She has been good in the carrier.  Have you tried keeping the carrier with the door open in a room and putting treats in there to get him to think the carrier is for good as well?

post #3 of 44
I know how you feel hugs.gif. My Perla has a Herpetic eye.... it is on the mend, but only after many different eye ointment's and drops. What finally helped to clear it was the NEO/POLY/DEX Ointment. It has a steroid in it for the inflammation. I had to give it 3 times a day too. BUT she is a wonderful little patient. I cannot imagine if she were not and I feel bad that this is so stressful for you and your cat. Stress can make the cat have a more serious flare-up as well. frown.gif. Have you tried to keep you cat on L-Lysine? I have Perla on this everyday now. AM/PM and it mixes in the wet food very easily. It comes in a powder form and you can buy it easily on-line. I buy NOW L-Lysine and it is very reasonable. http://www.amazon.com/NOW-Foods-Lysine-Powder-Pound/dp/B0013OSNOM/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1328750205&sr=8-3

Herpes never really goes away and it can be chronic - the Herpetic type which infects the eye tissue sniffle.gif Giving eye meds to a cat that is fighting you is really impossible - I wish I could offer a good suggestion as to how to make it easier on both of you right now. My only suggestion - and talk with the vet - but a mild anti-depressant for a short duration until you are finished with the eye meds. I only know this because I have a friend who has a cat that is the same way about any type of medication and when she uses this medication, the cat is more docile during the med. dosing. Just a thought. I really hope that your kitties eyes will be better. Try the Lysine, though. It really IS for Herpes kitties. vibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gifvibes.gif
post #4 of 44
Thread Starter 

Actually that was a lot of help. I will order some lysine now. He hasn't had a flare up in a while, so I would like to keep it that way. Do you know if there is anything else in the environment that you can change to help with flare ups? Obviously having him be a stressed out kitty isn't helping him, so I should focus on making his life less stressful - maybe he just needs some anxiety/anti-depressant meds, because he is always stressed out. 

 

And yes, I've tried making the cat carrier a good place for him, but he is smart. He knows exactly what happens when he goes in there. I brought the carrier home from taking one of the other kitties to the vet and set it in kitchen. He wouldn't go in there, even though his food was in there, until I moved it to the top of the closet. He has had way too many vet visits for me to try to convince him it is good. Poor little guy just thinks I'm being mean to him. I tried the treats too and other types of positive reinforcement and it doesn't work for him either. He is too high strung.

post #5 of 44

A different style of carrier might help.  A top-loading wire one is completely cat-proof, and easy to get them in and out of.  The down side is you need to stand it on something waterproof in the car...  Google 'wire cat carrier' to see the sort of thing I mean.  Covering it might help as well.  I would ask the vet nurse to show you how she or he would administer eye drops.  They handle a lot of different cats and are almost always very good at making it quite and easy.

post #6 of 44
Thread Starter 

I had a wire door on the one he broke and he ripped his paws up breaking out of it. I might try one of the duffel bag types...

 

As it stand right now though, I've convinced my vet to just allow me to call in refills on his meds and not have to bring him in because he doesn't think it is healthy for him either (and he knows that I can tell when he has a breakout).

post #7 of 44

I have a herpes kitty and what's helped us is Lysine, switching to a grain-free diet for her, a daily antihistamine (she gets upper respiratory infections), and evening primrose oil to help as an anti-inflammatory.  I am a member of the Yahoo group for feline herpes and many on there have used Eye See Clearly drops successfully.  Also, keeping the stress level in your house down should also help with the flare ups since herpes is often triggered by stress.  You might want to look into one or more of the Spirit Essences to help with trips to the vet. 

post #8 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanietx View Post

I have a herpes kitty and what's helped us is Lysine, switching to a grain-free diet for her, a daily antihistamine (she gets upper respiratory infections), and evening primrose oil to help as an anti-inflammatory.  I am a member of the Yahoo group for feline herpes and many on there have used Eye See Clearly drops successfully.  Also, keeping the stress level in your house down should also help with the flare ups since herpes is often triggered by stress.  You might want to look into one or more of the Spirit Essences to help with trips to the vet. 

Great to know about the Eye See Clearly drops !!!!!!!! Where do you find these drops? At a pharmacy...... thanks for the tip.wink.gif
post #9 of 44
Thread Starter 

Yeah, thanks for the information. I try to keep the house stress free (I don't even let people come over because it scares him), but he is so neurotic. I think he needs kitty valium.

post #10 of 44
Another vote for the l-lysine pure powder. I lived with a herpes boy for 12 years. The l-lysine saved his eyes. smile.gif
post #11 of 44

Angel has it too. Yes, I agree with what the others are saying. I have given him L-lysine in his wet food 2x/day as well as a little Nutritional Yeast for a couple of yrs now.

It really helps. Yes, I have found that the Neo Poly drops work best as well. A couple of months ago when he had one & didn't seem to be getting better from them, the vet tried a diff. drop. don't remember the name, but was an anti-viral one we had to keep in the fridge. It didn't really work, so poor baby had to go another round back on the Neo Poly. Yes, because he seems to need them every few months or so, the vet just lets me stop in & pick them up when I need them. (This way your not paying for an office visit every time too!)  Fortunately, he is a good patient as well, he doesn't like it, but lets me do it. (The top of the washing mach. or dryer work great like a table @ the vet as well.)  As far as helping him w/ stress, maybe try one of those behavioral calming collars I have heard others mention in other forums. I think you can find them @ Pet Smart, or on line. Good luck, sending good vibes your way!! heartpump.gifvibes.gif

 

post #12 of 44

You can check the website, www.allergicpet.com for the Eye See Clearly drops. 

post #13 of 44

The Bach Rescue Remedy is also a good one for stress. I have had the one for pets (in a glycerin base instead of alcohol) & I would put a couple of drops on a treat before going to the vet. seemed to work well.  The Back Flower Essence's work very well. (I worked as a buyer in a natural food co-op for 61/2yrs. & recommended them often for people & pets. :)

post #14 of 44
Tolly rbheart.gif 's herpes flare ups were so bad when he was a kitten into his second year that I thought he was going to lose one or both eyes. He had received a herpes diagnosis from one of the vets he saw, but he had so many drops and ointments prescribed that he got so his eyes couldn't tolerate ANYTHING in them. Finally, finally I had a vet refer him to Cornell University Companion Animal Hospital where he saw an ophthalmology specialist.

The specialist prescribed l-lysine 500 mg daily. Nothing in the eyes at all. When he had flare-ups that went into secondary infection, he took oral antibiotics, clavamox.

It's important to understand that antibiotics will cure secondary bacterial infections, but will not cure herpes. The goal is to greatly reduce or prevent altogether, the flare-ups. While I realize every case is different, no ointment or drop or eye medicine of any kind every did Tolly any good, and in fact made things much much worse.

His recovery when I started him on the l-lysine was dramatic. His eyes, which had been swollen and red, half closed and filled with discharges for almost his entire life up to that point were clear and dry within a week, once he started on the l-lysine. It doesn't always happen that fast, but it did for Tolly. I remember I was stunned to find out his eyes were a beautiful clear green color.

In the first few years after starting the l-lysine, he continued to have flare ups several times a year. They seemed seasonal, November and March and once or twice during the hottest days of summer. At first, the flare-ups would go into the secondary bacterial infection, and he would take clavamox for 14 days. By the third year on l-lysine, the flare-ups were no longer going into the secondary infection. He would show signs of a flare up, but then it would go away again.

By the fifth year he was doing so well I reduced him from the therapeutic dose of 500 mg a day to a maintenance dose of 500 mg every other day. If I saw signs of a flare up I would increase the dose to daily for a week or two.

How I knew he was heading for a flare-up was, his eye would start shedding a little brown square speck.

Keeping stress at a minimum is important, too of course. Feliway plug in diffusers are great for helping to reduce stress.
post #15 of 44
Thread Starter 

I am trying the Lysine powder, but I don't think adding additional drops will help in his case. He hates them and it would only increase his stress. 

post #16 of 44

The Lysine is pretty helpful in preventing the flareups.

Obviously you know about stress being the biggest trigger for recurring the virus's symptoms.

I have rescued many kittens and cats with herpesvirus (rhinotracheitis) It is the "R" in their vaccine FVRCP.

(feline viral rhinotracheitis calicivirus and panleukopenia) the 3 ugliest viruses for cats that can be prevented by vaccination. The 2nd  one can be deadly, especially in kittens, and the 3rd is deadly, it's the parvovirus in dogs and puppies, and we all know how deadly that is.

 

I have used hardcore treatment for cats' eyes to treat herpes and calici, with IDOX.

Kicks butt! I have simultaneously used terramycin along with the idox drops as well.

Good luck :)

 

Oh and yes, there's no reason for him to have to see the vet everytime!

When/if he does have to be in a carrier, be sure to cover it completely with a towel. Does wonders to calm!

post #17 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanietx View Post

You can check the website, www.allergicpet.com for the Eye See Clearly drops. 

Thank you very much smile.gif.
post #18 of 44

Thanks for the info!  I have some questions on meds to ask the vet for inky's appt friday.

post #19 of 44

Hi

I was wondering if its safe to have a herpes + cat with my cat?

Also, the vet said that the cat would eventually go blind.

Her eyes are just a little cloudy.

He said I would have to do a sympathy PTS.

Is this true?

post #20 of 44

There is no need to pts because a cat loses it's sight - they manage very well.  However personally I wouldn't knowingly bring an FHV+ cat into a household with otherwise healthy cats.  Stress can make them shed, and a new home is stressful.

post #21 of 44
Well, as so many rescue cats have herpes, there are simply heaps of homes with cats mixed with those that have it and those that don't. We have 8 cats, all rescues, and only one has herpes. It's nine years since we rescued her, and no one else has ever contracted the virus. I wouldn't think twice about bringing a cat with herpes virus into a home with cats that don't already have it.

And your vet clearly doesn't know much about the illness. Are there other vets in the area? Seems like it's time for a new one if that's an option. I don't know the condition of the eyes. Most will clear up, as you can see from the above posts earlier in the thread. Some do not. Our kitty was so bad off when we rescued her that she needed to have one eye removed, but the damage had already been done. We were able to save the other eye, and she does just fine. Some kitties have had to have both eyes removed, and blind kitties get around just fine if you spend a little time learning about their needs.

Your vet, I'm sorry to say, does not appear to be at all current on treatment of herpes. And if he thinks blind cats don't do just fine and make great pets, he or she is grossly misinformed.
post #22 of 44

Thank you so much for the info. I foster and so she has been here but quarrentined in another room.

He said it is very painful .

Her eyes look fine but they are just a little cloudy.

He said she will go blind in 3-4 yrs.

and that she will be in pain the whole time.

I give her lysime everyday but he said i should put a lubricant

gel in her eye genteal eye cream

any thoughts on this?

I appreciate your feed back a lot by the way.

post #23 of 44



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by catkitty View Post

Thank you so much for the info. I foster and so she has been here but quarrentined in another room.

He said it is very painful .

Her eyes look fine but they are just a little cloudy.

He said she will go blind in 3-4 yrs.

and that she will be in pain the whole time.

I give her lysime everyday but he said i should put a lubricant

gel in her eye genteal eye cream

any thoughts on this?

I appreciate your feed back a lot by the way.



I would personally get a second opinion from another vet.

 

post #24 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misty8723 View Post


I would personally get a second opinion from another vet.

yeah.gif It really seems like you need a vet more knowledgeable about herpes and eyes. agree.gif DId he prescribe an ointment? Which one does he recommend? There are SO many options for treatment. Honestly, I can't imagine a vet saying it's causing her pain and sending her home - or recommending killing her over simply having both eyes removed. frown.gif Perhaps it's a surgery you or the rescue don't want or can't afford to pay. That's different. But here's a link to another thread where a kitty had to have both eyes removed. The surgery was successful, and kitty is healthy and happy and doing great! http://www.thecatsite.com/t/236013/kitten-with-no-eyes

This is what our Flowerbelle looked like at various stages. She did not act like she was in pain, she did not rub her eyes, and our vet said she was not in pain. dontknow.gif

After almost 3 weeks in the hospital after being rescued from a liquor store parking lot, and 2 days before she came home with us:

450

They tried putting antibiotic ointment in her eye and stitching it closed for a week or so:

400

It didn't work:

375

We fought for almost seven months to keep her bad eye, get it fixed up. She required medicating 11x a day (with all the pills, supplements, drops, ointments).

This was her eye the day before her surgery to have it removed:

368


After we had it removed, her energy levels went up about a million percent. This is what she looks like now (well, this was taken in November):

600
post #25 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by catkitty View Post

Hi

I was wondering if its safe to have a herpes + cat with my cat?



I have a cat who my vet thinks has herpes, he used to have recurring URIs as a kitten. As he became an adult the infections decreased and he is now 4 and has not had one since he was a "teenager" not even when under stress. None of my other cats seemed to have caught it or at least they did not have any similar problems. The lysine definitely helps also, my vet had me do a maintenance dose of 250 mg twice a day and for flare-ups, 500 mg twice a day.

post #26 of 44

thank you so much

it wasn't about the money

she had those ultra drops or whatever they are put in

and the lights shown on it and he said there were ulcers and

it was very painful.

I don't want to put her down.

I just lost my daughter then one month later her 14 yr old

cat and i just can't do it but i don't want to kill my other cat.

Let me see if I can find a foto of her.

I will take her to another vet

Im so glad I found this site.

oops they won't let me post a foto.

post #27 of 44

Catkitty, wondering what country you are in - tend to assume the US without any clues but could be wrong.

 

Another vet is well worth doing, and I know of at least one cat that had both eyes removed because of this sort of problem that had a good quality of life afterwards. 

post #28 of 44

im in Florida US

post #29 of 44
Oh no! I am so sorry to hear about your daughter and your granddaughter. rbheart.gifhugs.gifhugs.gifhugs.gifhugs.gifhugs.gif
post #30 of 44

what actual bach flower remedies would you specifically advise for this? my cat Jimmy-James probably has late onset feline herpes virus (scabbing/bleeding on nose and around the eyes by tear ducts, plus problems in mouth - had to have almost all his teeth out due to it), am using l-lysine but only 250mg as its a big squish of it and he doesnt like it as it is! cannot imagine how i would get two squirts a day down him...so am looking for other alternatives. do you just mean the bach rescue remedy or the animal one, or more specific ones and if so, which?  i have found some other make flower essences on the internet purportedly for boosting an animal's immune system but they are in america (im in the uk) and they are both costly to buy and to ship,whereas bach remedies are readily available and more affordable here. I have had some excellent advice already on another website but was interested when i came across this mention of using flower essence remedies too. thank you.

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