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  • Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (FVR) is an infectious disease caused by feline herpesvirus type-1. As with other herpes viruses, the virus is very species specific, and is only known to cause infections in domestic and wild cats. The virus can infect cats of all ages.

  • Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) is a virus specific to the cat family. It was first recognized in the mid 1980's and it has been found in cats worldwide. Although widespread, it is not a common infection in cats. Only 1-5% of cats show evidence of exposure to the virus. In some cats exposure to the virus leads to clinical signs and symptoms that result in deficiency in the immune system.

  • Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) is an important disease of domestic cats and most members of the cat family (Felidae). It occurs worldwide in cats of all ages, but the disease is most common in young cats less than two years of age.

  • FIP is a disease caused by a mutated strain of coronavirus. This mutation allows the virus to spread throughout the body within specific white blood cells called macrophages.

  • The early signs of FIP disease can be quite vague and may not be obvious. If your cat appears to be in good health and your veterinarian found no abnormalities on a physical examination, then the "positive" test means only that your cat has been exposed to a strain of Feline Coronavirus, the virus that can cause FIP.

  • Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is one of the most important infectious viruses of cats. It was first discovered in cats with a form of leukemia, hence its name. FeLV is the cause of a variety of diseases, not just leukemia.

  • Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is one of the most important viruses infecting cats. FeLV tends to become a persistent infection and depresses the immune system of cats. FeLV is an important cause of anemia in cats and can cause cancers of several types. For further details on this important disease, see our handout "Feline Leukemia Virus Disease Complex".

  • Feline miliary dermatitis is a general term used to describe a skin condition in cats that most commonly results from an allergic reaction. Since the most common allergic dermatitis or skin allergy in the cat is flea allergy dermatitis, the two terms have become synonymous. The term miliary means resembling millet seeds.

  • The term panleukopenia means a decrease in the number of all of the white blood cells in the body. White blood cells play a major role in immunity and are important in defending against infections and diseases. In severe panleukopenia, white blood cell numbers may drop from the normal of several thousand per milliliter of blood to just a few hundred.

  • Because cat foods are so palatable now, it is not as common to find a feline picky eater, but it can happen. It appears that for some cats, providing lots of variety—different flavors, styles, and textures—can overwhelm a cat with choices. For some cats, too much of a good thing (e.g. lots of food variety) is not necessarily a good thing!