Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)
FIV is a disease seen in cats that is caused by a virus that is similar to HIV in people, which is why it is sometimes referred to as feline AIDS. FIV makes cats sick by suppressing their immune system, which means they are much more susceptible to infections and cancer. Cats can remain apparently healthy for months to years after contracting FIV, but eventually it will cause them to become unwell.
FIV is transmitted from cat to cat through bite wounds, and once infected cats carry the virus for life. The virus is not contagious to humans.
Recent studies show that in Victoria, 26% of the cat population are FIV positive. This means that any cat which spends any time at all outdoors is at risk of contracting the disease. Luckily, there is now a vaccine available against FIV, which we recommend for all cats that spend ANY time outside. To be protected your kitten needs a primary course of three injections, then a booster every 12 months. Adult cats which have not previously been vaccinated against FIV will need to have a blood test prior to this same course of injections.
If you have any questions about FIV, or would like to book your cat in for vaccination then give us a call at the clinic on 9744 3611.
See how many cats have tested positive in your area at this clinic
Map of Sunbury with red dots indicate positive readings from cats brought into the clinic for testing