FELINE IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS PREVENTION
Currently no vaccine is available, therefore control
of FIV infection relies on avoiding cat-to-cat transmission.
In pet cats kept alone or in small groups, the best
if not the easiest way to risk of infection is prevention of roaming and fighting.
There is no evidence that neutering reduces risk of infection in males.
If either the new cat or any existing cats are infected
with FIV, new cats ought not be introduced into a household as this will lead
to fighting and increased risk of transmission.
However, in a stable multi-cat household in which
fighting is rare, the risk of transmission from infected to non-infected cats
may be small.
There is no humane reason why a cat should be killed
simply because it is infected with FIV, although it has been suggested that owners
of infected cats have a moral duty to prevent their cats from roaming. In a breeding
colony with no evidence of FIV infection, avoid the introduction of seropositive
cats by antibody testing and quarantine.
If the colony contains cats seropositive for FIV,
it is probably best to separate or rehouse infected cats. Although detectable
queen-to-kitten transmission is rare, it is inadvisable to breed from infected
In a boarding or rescue cattery, cats ought to be
housed in separate pens to avoid fighting. Infection does not appear to spread
on fomites or feeding dishes, and if the recommendations for preventing spread
of respiratory disease are followed, there should be no risk of FIV transmission.
If cats do have to be housed together in a rescue cattery, they should be quarantined
for, say, 12 weeks on entering the cattery, then tested for FIV antibody before
being allowed to mix with other FIV-negative cats.
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