Feline Leukemia Causes
You may have a pet that you consider a part of your family. Some may have dogs while others have preferences for cats. Felines are indeed adorable when they are in the mood for a cat play. However, they can be really grouchy when they are sick. One of the serious medical conditions that may affect your little feline friend is the feline leukemia. This illness sometimes goes undiagnosed and becomes the primary cause of the death of your cat. What is this condition? What can you do to prevent this syndrome from affecting your little furry friend? This article will focus on the pathophysiology of the disease, the symptoms, and the treatment of those cats affected with this disease.
Feline leukemia is due to the presence of anemia that is secondary to a lymphoma. Cats who acquire this disease do not die from the disease itself but mostly secondary to the complications brought about by the weakened immune system. There are several observations that claim that about 85% of cats that have this syndrome would die in three years time. Nevertheless, the condition is not 100% fatal, as there are reports that about 70% of infected felines recover without any intervention.
Right now, you may be wondering if your cat would be able to contaminate or transmit this disease process to your other pets (if you have any) or to any member of your family. The answer is that this disease is only present in cats; meaning, meaning only cats can acquire this syndrome. It cannot affect your child or any other pets like dogs, rabbits, and any other animal. Alternatively, if you have other cats, it might be best to quarantine your affected pet. Putting your infected pet in quarantine is important because it may transmit the disease to your other cats through the blood, saliva, feces, and urine. If your infected cat is pregnant or lactating, the litter may be able to contract the disease as well.
Feline Leukemia Symptoms
It is important that you keep in mind that kittens are most likely to acquire feline leukemia than adult cats due to increased resistance of the immune system. It is vital that you are aware of the symptoms of this disease process. Your cat may have pale gums, yellowing of the mucosa (eyes and mouth), swollen lymph nodes, loss of appetite that may lead to weight loss, coat has poor condition, and frequent bouts of infections (respiratory diseases).
The diagnosis is made after your vet runs a blood test, which is the ELISA. Once your cat is diagnosed to have the infection, the treatment must start at once. This is because there is a large percentage of cats succumbing to this serious illness after about three years or so. It is important that you keep regular appointment with your veterinarian to ensure that there would be no complications or secondary infections that may aggravate the condition. At the present, there is no cure for feline leukemia.
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