This group is to make feline owners aware of this disease, FIV and allow discussions/questions regarding it. It is also to make people aware that if your cat is positive with FIV, you don't have to euthanize him/her.
Code of Conduct Visibility: open Membership: open Group Email: CATAIDS@groups.care2.com
This group was created to educate feline owners about FIV and the truth about a cat's prognosis. I am not a Veterinarian, but I have worked in the animal medicine feild for 10 years and as a Tech for 6. I also have two FIV positive cats. FIV (Feline Immunodeficientcy Virus) or Feline AIDS, is a disease that breaks down the immune system leading to other possible health problems such as: unirnary tract infections, respiratory infections and easily contracting other diseases like Feline Leukiemia. This disease is just like the human form of AIDS, except it is only contractable to other cats. Humans can not get it from cats and vice-versa. Usually if a positive cat is fed a nutritious diet and kept away from possible infections they will be just fine and live as long as any other cat. My first cat was diagnased with FIV when he was 3 years old. I was devestated, because I thought he would get sick and die. When I researched the disease and possible outcomes I discovered he would probably be fine. He is now 12 years old, and healthy as ever.
Later I wanted to get another cat and found one that had already been diagnosed with FIV. He was to be euthanized if he didn't find a home, so I took a chance. He has turned out to be a great cat. He was 2 years old when I got him and now he is 8. He is also very healthy with no troubles.
I began doing more research and found that there had been studies on just how contagious it was. Many studies showed the only way to contract FIV was through deep penetrating bites or breeding. So, I decided to give it a try with a few non-positive cats. I now have my two FIV positive cats and five that are negative. I have had two of them for five years and they test negative every year. All my cats drink and eat out of the same bowls. They play and wrestle and do all kinds of crazy things. None of the cats that were originally negative have contracted the disease.
This was not mearly an experiment, I wanted more cats because I love them. They all came along with no home and most were to be euthanized if I hadn't taken them. This only works well because all of them have been spayed/neutered and none of them attack each other viciously enough to inflict deep wounds.
I am not telling anyone who has an FIV positive cat to bring home other cats and just see what happens. If you want to then go ahead. I am still taking a risk that one of them could get it, but I feel that is a very low risk. If your current cat is aggressive toward other cats or is not spayed/neutered then don't get another cat at all, whether it is FIV positive or not. You don't want them to breed or fight anyway, do you? Most importantly, don't let your FIV positive cat go outside! EVER! Unless you have a secluded area thet is screened in and there is no way of encountering a stray cat. They will fight and spread the disease and they can get other illnesses or wounds that could become hugh problems. It is also best to keep your cat on a good diet (not Cat Chow!) and give them vitamins.
I just want people to know that if you have several cats and they get along and one of them turns up positive, you can keep them together. You don't have to euthanize and you don't have to seperate them. Anyone that has comments, suggestions or questions regarding this subject are all welcome.
I hope this group will give help to all who need it. Thanks!