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Feline Herpes

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
My kitty Tia has been dealing with what is probably feline herpes for the last couple weeks. I was supposed to stop putting the ointment in her eyes this Sunday, but today her eyes were looking as bad as the first day I brought her to the vet. Today will now be her fifth visit since this started. $$$$. The vet recommened L-Lysine so I'm giving her that, but sounds like it takes some time to build up in her system to be of any benefit. Anyone know of any other recommendations? Anything I can do or change to help her though this.

Beth
post #2 of 22
I am dealing with the same thing so i want to see what others have to say.
post #3 of 22
If she still has yellow or green discharge from her eyes, a new antibiotic might be in order.
post #4 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmmac
My kitty Tia has been dealing with what is probably feline herpes for the last couple weeks. I was supposed to stop putting the ointment in her eyes this Sunday, but today her eyes were looking as bad as the first day I brought her to the vet. Today will now be her fifth visit since this started. $$$$. The vet recommened L-Lysine so I'm giving her that, but sounds like it takes some time to build up in her system to be of any benefit. Anyone know of any other recommendations? Anything I can do or change to help her though this.

Beth
The ointment can often times make things worse than better, depending on the severity of the symptoms.
Feline herpes flare ups are brought on by stress. Most cats don't like having anything put in their eyes, so the fact that you're doing this daily, stresses the cat out even more. I've seen cats so upset with the eye ointment, that they will furiously rub their eyes after the treatment. Doing so makes the eye inflamed and actually becomes counter-productive. Perhaps even producing corneal abrasions.
Herpes is a virus and there is no cure and the ointment doesn't make it go away. It's merely an antibiotic used to treat a possible secondary bacterial eye infection. Sometimes I think the Vets prescribe this, because the owners insist on having some medication to administer, even though most times it doesn't help much.
If you cat becomes a chronic sufferer of feline herpes the best things to do are these:
1. Reduce or eliminate the stress trigger that causes an outbreak.
2. Provide the very best diet possible and include 600 mg of Lysine daily.
3. When your cats eye's get runny, use a warm moist cotton cloth to gently remove the crud from the corner of her eyes. Do this as many times a day as she will tolerate. Use a clean cloth everytime.
If your cat hates this, catch her when she's snoozing or otherwise very relaxed. The idea is to reduce stress until her immune system can supress the virus again.
4. If the eye goop is green or there is green discharge from the nose, see your Vet, as there are opportunistic bacterial infections going on as well, and it may be wise to administer some oral antibiotics.
post #5 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Doolittle
If she still has yellow or green discharge from her eyes, a new antibiotic might be in order.
Why antibiotics when dealing with a virus?
post #6 of 22
A green discharge is an infection, often bacterial and that will respond to antibiotics
post #7 of 22
Yellow and Green discharge from the eyes indicates a bacterial infection. In this case, with the Herpes virus, the bacterial infection is likely secondary to the viral infection but it still needs to be treated. If there is only conjunctivitis (swelling of the eyelids) and irritation then there is likely no bacterial infection and the problem is viral. If this is the case then there is nothing to do but what Kai reccomended. Reduce stress, good nutrition, lysine, and time.

If there is yellow and/or green discharge and it is now worse than before it must be resistant to whatever antibiotics are being used. This could be chlamydia- did the vet look at a scraping of the conjunctiva? If it is chlamydia, then the standard antibiotics won't work. My kitten was on pentamycetin and got better for a week or so then the infection returned, we put her on Ciloxan- cleared it right up!

Sometimes an ointment with a steroid is in order. Steroids reduce inflammation and will make the cat feel much better. There are side effects though. Steroids do supress the immune system so if there is already an ulcer present the steroids will delay healing and make the ulcer much worse. I have seen Herpes go untreated and the inflammation sometimes gets so severe that ulcers result. Your vet is obviously the best one to make this decision but steroids might help.
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
When I brought her to the Vet for the 1st time there was a little yellow under one eye that was dried up. She had ulcers in both eyes. Last Saturday's visit showed one eye healed and some more healing time to go for the other. I've been going home everyday for lunch to make sure she gets the ointment in her eyes 3 times a day.

I didn't see any stuff with color under her eyes this morning. Runny, but no color. Tia is a Ragdoll and doesn't fight me or freak out when I put the ointment in her eyes. I just sit indian style on the floor, put her in the hole made by crossing my legs, I don't even need to hold her down. The vet was amazed at the last check when she didn't freak at having something put in her eye.

I can't think of the whole name of what I'm using for her eyes.
(????optic-p).

Beth
post #9 of 22
If she has ulcers then she needs to stay on the antibiotic- more as a prevention than a cure. Corneal ulcers take a long time to heal as there is very little blood supply to this part of the eye. It sounds like you are doing all you can- keep up the good work!
post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 
Tia's visit to the vet didn't turn out as bad as I thought. I figured the ulcers were coming back. They're gone, but she does have conjunctivitis. When I picked her up in the afternoon, she had yellow gunk all over her eyes that wasn't there in the morning. Her vet was very happy the ulcers were gone and said the conjunctivitis was not nearly as bad. I have a new ointment for her eyes, erythromycin. I have to put it in her eyes three times a day for the next two weeks. I guess my kitty gets to see me every day for lunch for another couple weeks.

Thanks for the posts.

Beth
post #11 of 22
That's good news. Thanks for the update!
post #12 of 22
when Pixel had her major flare-up, & was diagnosed, JAva had just come to live with us...i think that was the stress trigger for her, altho losing Mouse probably contributed to her stress level, as well. she had no secondary infection, just the viral, & i found that the lysine worked fabulously on her - the sores started drying up within just a few days! since she's a picky eater, i can't just add lysine to her wet food, because many times she won't eat it, so i use the gel form Viralys. it's relatively easy to administer, & seems to work quickly. here's hoping your kitty will continue to improve. oh, i also got feliway to help Pixel's stress level. she's adjusted to her loss & the new cat now, & i haven't needed to replace my feliway for the last few months.
post #13 of 22
Feline Herpes is a pain. Everyone's poor kitties!! I wish they had diagnosed Riley earlier, would have saved his eye.

I found a few good sites on this subject...I'll post the links when I am not running out the door!


Best of luck!
post #14 of 22
Your kitty need antibiotics as well as steroids to ease the inflammation. so chek your vet periodically for preventhing secondary bacterial infection. In our place (India) we use homeopathis pills viz., THUJA for curing herpes. I dun know whether is it available there?
post #15 of 22
my kitten also has herpes. we started with a bacterial ointment and when there was only minimal improvement by vet switched her to an antiviral w aan anti-inflammatory. I also got feliway infusers to reduce her stress and added Lysine to her diet inthe morning (250 mg cuz she is 4 pounds). A week later her eyes are much better, she has more energy and since she is not a fussy eater she accepts the pulverized lysine just fine. And she finally has stopped fussing royally when I pick her up for the ointment application.

I guess this will always be with her so keeping her stress free and keeping her eyes clean will be ongoing. I love seeing her get well.
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail
I guess this will always be with her so keeping her stress free and keeping her eyes clean will be ongoing. I love seeing her get well.
it's just amazing the difference that lysine makes! glad do hear she's doing so well! actually, you might be able to discontinue the lysine & use it symptomatically - i've been able to do that for Pixel. if i see her eye starting to goop up, i give her lysine for a few days. but i don't give it to her all the time. but i also think her stress level has gone down - Java's not new anymore, & it's been almost a year since Mouse went to the bridge.
post #17 of 22
Laureen: how will I know when Lysine isn't needed daily? What do you think?
post #18 of 22
When my kitten was diagnosed with eye herpes, they put him on Terramycin opthalmic ointment, and it went away. Whether this WAS in fact eye herpes or just an eye infection, I have no idea, (it was like 10 years ago) but we prescribe Terramycin for it at my clinic, I think.
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail
Laureen: how will I know when Lysine isn't needed daily? What do you think?
well, i kept Pixel on it for a few weeks after her symptoms cleared up, then stopped & just watched her closely. she's so hard to dose that the giving of the lysine is in itself a stressor, so when i notice something suspicious looking, i put her back on for a few days. if your kitty doesn't mind it in the food, it'll be much easier for you to continue it longer. do you have any idea what her stressors are? & the feliway helps, too.
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail
Laureen: how will I know when Lysine isn't needed daily? What do you think?
I use it daily even when my two aren't flaring up. I just give them 500mg instead of 1000mg, as was reccommended to me by my vet.
post #21 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by laureen227
if your kitty doesn't mind it in the food, it'll be much easier for you to continue it longer. do you have any idea what her stressors are? & the feliway helps, too.
Luckily Abi isn't a fussy eater at all. she easily takes the ground up lysine with any wet food, she also takes pills well. The eye ointment , ironically, was a major stressor but HAD to be done. Now that she is settling into a new home (three weeks maybe) the stress is greatly reduced. and she and I are learning how to communicate, and the feliway infusors are doing their job I hope we can keep flareups to a minimum, Now that her eyes are better and the tapeworms and ear mites are taken care of she is HIGHLY energetic. she was batting her knit mice around inside a dry bathtub for almost 30 minutes this morning. now she is conked out on my lap and into rem sleep. My husband has elevated her from a lemon to a keylime.
post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail
My husband has elevated her from a lemon to a keylime.
well, i should think so glad to hear she's doing so well!
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