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in other news

This may seem like nothing in the midst of bigger things, but the vet called this morning to say the new kitty's feline leukemia test came back positive.

Anyone have any experience with this? I am beyond sad right now.

[And on Fox News news, Shepard Smith just said something like, right now, here in the U.S., there is an elderly man laying dead in the side of the road and authorities are just passing him by]

Jesus. I'm going out for a drive.


Michele, I've been through this. If it's the only cat you have it's a good thing because if one is positive the others most likely will be too.

On the upside, the cat we had with feline leukemia, after initially getting sick, lived for another eight years.

We had a cat years ago diagnosed with feline leukemia; he lived another six or seven years after the diagnoses and died at the age of 14 (of kidney problems due to diabetes). Yes Iím talking about a cat with diabetes; we actually had to give him insulin shots twice a day for the last three years of his life. Resilient creatures cats are.

The biggest thing is not to let her around other cats, as it's highly contagious. Other than that, just take the best care of her that you can and give her some snuggles from me, too.

I don't know what to say, besides Google the hell out of it. My cat was diagnosed with diabetes about a year ago, and all the information I got from .org sites and feline support sites made me more informed and more comfortable than I thought I could be. My cat was 8 years old. Not sure how I'd have reacted if I got such bad news just days after I had brought her home as a kitten.

And Shepard Smith, I watched that too. He showed the video of the guy, and one second after it ended, he said "that was wrong". That is, it was wrong to show the video. Just kind of shows what the mood is like there after seeing so much death, as the judgement calls gets cloudier and cloudier.

I'm so sorry about the bad kitty news! :(

Kitty could live a very long time as long as you manage her health. Definitely do some research. Just keep her away from other cats who are negative.

What about her littermates?

If the cat needs to be an only cat, make sure the cat bonds with the dogs.

Michele - The best quick overview of FeLV I know is http://www.vet.cornell.edu/fhc/resources/brochure/felv.html. There is a particularly good section on management of FeLV about two-thirds of the way down the page.

FeLV is not necessarily an immediate death sentence. Some cats can live years with the virus. Some vets are trying anti-viral drugs; I know that the Cornell page says that there's no evidence that these help, but friends of mine who do small animal practice tell me that they've heard anectdotal evidence it may be helpful for some cats. You may want to ask your own vet about that.

I'm a veterinarian, although my primary work is with large animals. If you have any questions after looking over all the information out there, feel free to email me.

How expensive is it to treat a cat with FeLV these days?

I'm SO sorry to hear about Shakey!!! I know it is hard , but you should keep in mind that you're giving her the chance for a loving home for a while which far more than lots of animals ever get.

I've found the forums on thecatsite.com really useful in the course of having cats, the posters are very experienced and supportive. (though is sortof crazy cat lady land sometimes) There are people there who have FeLV positive cats and they can tell you more about day to day life, treatment costs and other things.

Hang in there!

My heart goes out to you. Please let us know what your vet recommends.

i've lost many a cat to feline leukemia.

and actually the dog got cancer and had to be put down last year.

for the cats we always had many growing up and it just became a fact of life that we'd lose some to it.

Hi, Michele

Step one - don't panic. About 30% of the kittens who test positive will spontaneously seroconvert to negative. If this is an only cat, then just wait 3 months and re-test. If he is then negative, you have a cat who has a pretty good chance of living a normal life with no ill effects of FeLV. Some cats do develop latent infections that may manifest themselves years later in life - but that is something you can't worry about. If your kitten tests negative in 3 months he is not infectious to other cats, even if he has entered a period of latency.

If you retest in 90 days and the test is still positive, then you have a true FeLV+ cat. Some of these cats will live for a very long time with no ill effects, but many will go on to develop some pretty severe and often fatal complications of the infection. Of course, if the kitten is persistently positive he is a risk to all other cats, so needs to be kept in a single cat household situation, and not allowed to roam the neighborhood.

Sorry if I missed some of the specific details of the kitten. Things are a little hectic down here in southern Louisiana right now, so I didn't have time to go back and read any other posts pertaining to the cat. I just saw the FeLV post, and just wanted to tell you not to panic just yet, and certainly not to do anything drastic with the kitten. If you have other cats in the house, he does need to be quarantined until he can be retested.

Gool luck,


I'm sorry your cat has feline leukemia. I second what other commenters said about keeping your cat away from other cats, since FIV is highly contagious.

I'd recommend you call your vet and find out how to take care of your cat. I had a cat with auto-immune deficiency. He was born with it, and diagnosed when he was a kitten. He lived to be 14 years old. He died of cancer. So, there's a good chance your kitty can live for a long time. Just spoil your kitty rotten. ;)

Sorry, I typed FIV when I meant to type FL. My mistake.

Everyone's beat me to it so I'll just echo: Keep Master Shake away from other cats. Keep all her other vaccinations current and keep her in good health generally. And then, who knows? My boyfriend's cat is FELV-positive and has been ever since he adopted him five years ago, and you'd never know there was a thing wrong with that cat--he's a playful, active, happy little guy who scarcely so much as sneezes.

My mother's policy has always been to put them down immediately upon receiving an FELV-positive verdict, but I'm glad Mark didn't do that; he'd have cheated a sweet cat out of at least 5 years of happy living--and it may yet be more.

Sorry about the blank post...

I'll just echo the other anecdotes about the kitty with FLV. We had two cats, both ended up with FLV (never figured out which had it first) but both lived very long lives (12+ yrs). This was over 20 years ago, so I can only imagine that treatment has come a long way.

Also, keeping you cat healthy is key. We went through the diabetes issue with one, who ended up living for several years on insulin.

Finally, we just put our oldest cat down about a month ago, at the age of 22. Really, REALLY sad...

Cats thrive on love. Give yours lots, and they'll live long...

Poor kitty

Look its just a cat...could have been a dog or worse.....learn to bond with an afgan sweater,,, they're just a soft and dont pee everywhere.

"Steve" == cockknocker


A friend of mine had a kitty who tested positive for FL. He lived to be 4. My wife got a kitten who tested positive for Feline Herpes. The vet said she wouldn't see 6 months. She just turned 18.

You never know with these things. Just love the kitty while you can.