How to Treat a Cat with Feline AIDS
Feline immunodeficiency virus or FIV is responsible for the spread of feline AIDS, a condition that is not transmissible to humans. This condition commonly occurs in stray cats, cats living in groups and also in domestic cats that often leave home and spend time on the street. It is transmitted through the bite of an infected cat and unfortunately no cure exists to date. It is therefore important to give your pet the necessary care to ensure his or her well-being. We'll explain how to do so in this oneHOWTO on how to treat a cat with Feline AIDS.
Keep in mind that the spread of feline AIDS is unlikely in domestic cats that live alone and do not leave home. This disease is usually present in animals that live in groups or those that go outside, particularly if they're involved in fights with other cats, because biting is the most common form of transmission.
It is not contagious to humans or other animals. Once the veterinarian confirms that your cat has FIV, it is very important to provide the necessary care to ensure your pet's welfare.
There is no cure for feline AIDS, but with certain guidelines, your cat can live a long and healthy life. Just as humans who get sick from HIV can live for many years, this does not mean you're going to lose your feline friend. You just have to be responsible and careful to protect the health of your cat, because its immune system will be weakened by the virus.
Feline AIDS progressively destroys the cat's bodily defenses, weakening the immune system and allowing invading viruses or bacteria to cause damage. Caring for your pet is essential to ensuring that he or she continues to live a happy and comfortable life, so the first thing to consider is giving your pet age-suitable high quality food that provides all the protein and nutrients your cat needs.
Consult your veterinarian if you think another type of cat food might be more suitable for your pet's condition. Above all, avoid giving homemade food or ingredients if you don't know the effect it may have on your cat's care. Read our article on toxic foods for cats to learn which ingredients are unsafe for cats.
It is very important to stay up to date with your cat's vaccination schedule. Remember, if your pet has a weakened immune system and you forget the vaccinations or booster shots, illnesses that are normally harmless can cause major complications. Taking good care of your cat's health is more important now than ever.
As we've mentioned, treating the immunodeficiency will focus on treating the symptoms. If the cat has a fever, you can give it antipyretics, if it loses its appetite, you should look find a special diet or serum for it. You will also have to treat any emerging bacterial infections with antibiotics. Regarding the virus, an antiviral called interferon (for cats) has recently been tested and has been found to improve symptoms and the quality of life of the cat. Consult a specialist veterinarian about using this.
To treat a cat with feline AIDS it is essential that you keep your pet free from all kinds of parasites, including fleas. Do not forget that parasites are capable of transmitting diseases and significantly harming your cat because of the weakened immune system, so fleas, ticks and internal parasites can be very detrimental to their welfare.
Read our article on how to prevent parasites in cats to avoid this problem.
It is important that your cat have a pleasant and comfortable environment at home and a well-established routine. Always feed your cat at the same time, keep the litter box very clean and make sure your pet gets all the TLC he or she needs. Do not make your cat anxious or stressed, and avoid forcing it to do things it doesn't want to.
An air freshener with pheromones can help to reduce stress and improve your cat's mood. Consult your veterinarian for recommendations.
It is critical that it does not leave the home, except when you take it to the vet and that it has no contact with other cats because it could infect them if they fight. Remember that this disease is contracted mainly through saliva, especially bites. So be prudent, and do not let your cat out when it wants to go, because it could not only worsen from contact with street cats but because it could also infect others.
When it comes to treat a cat with feline AIDS it is appropriate to provide your pet some supplements to keep it well-nourished. Vitamins A, B1, B6, B12, C, lysine and Omega 6 are some nutrients that will be very helpful.
To find the best supplements for your pet, consult your veterinarian. Last but not least, remember to always take your pet to the veterinarian if you notice that your cat is not feeling well. Taking care of your pet's health and consulting a health care professional are very important.
Whether your cat is male or female, we always recommend spaying/neutering it. This will avoid jealousy which makes cats escape from home and look for trouble on the street with other cats. If your cat is female, is FIV positive and becomes pregnant, it could transmit the virus to the fetus, even through breastfeeding. Therefore, sterilizing it is a responsible decision either way.
If you have more cats at home and one has been diagnosed with FIV, have the others tested to see if they are infected. If they are, do not be alarmed, you just have to be more aware of all of their health, nutrition, temperature changes, etc., in short, take very natural precautions so that your pet does not ever get sick. If they are not infected, and since these cats have lived together for some time, the probability of catching it is next to nothing, unless they get into a fight.
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