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IVF in cats: what is it?
IVF in cats: what is it?

There IVF in cats, is a purely feline disease that cannot be transmitted to humans. Like FeLV in cats, it is a serious disease for which there is no cure. However, there is a vaccine, which despite not being 100% effective, can be very useful in cases most at risk. Let's see in detail what is IVF in cats.

What is IVF

There IVF, also called Feline immunodeficiency (hence its name), or Feline HIV, it's a retrovirus, such as FeLV, which insinuates itself into the host's DNA cells, where it multiplies. IVF is a lentivirus, which is a virus that develops with a long incubation period that can last for months or even years. For this reason, its symptoms are not immediate, but rather manifest over time. The FIV virus behaves like the HIV virus that causes AIDS in humans.

The FIV virus attacks the immune system of the cat by destroying more and more white blood cells, exposing it exponentially to the development of other diseases and infections.

Despite the severity of the disease, the mortality due to the virus is very low in well-cared for domestic cats, since death from natural causes normally precedes death from disease. The terminal stage of the disease is called FAIDS (Feline AIDS), and its mortality rate is more common among stray cats.

How IVF contagion occurs


The infection IVF occurs from cat to cat very easily, especially in stray cats and in those who live outdoors. The contagion is also more widespread among the specimens unsterilized adult males, as they are more prone to fights with other cats. The virus responsible for the IVF is transmitted in fact, through the direct contact of saliva and blood, through bites and wounds, through coupling, and through urine and feces (although the latter are quite rare). There transmission of the disease it can also occur between mother cat and kittens at the birth of the latter, but this modality is also quite rare.

What are the symptoms of IVF

Cats with FIV usually have a few days after contracting the disease nonspecific symptoms such as fever, swollen glands and fatigue. This phase lasts for 2-3 days, after which it disappears completely. Although the cat may not show signs of discomfort, from that moment on its immune system will be weakened and increasingly exposed to the onset of other infections and diseases.

Possible symptoms of IVF in cats I'm:

  • Minor recurrent illnesses, especially affecting the gastrointestinal tract
  • Diseases of the respiratory system
  • Moderate lymph node swelling
  • Painful gingivitis
  • Inflammation of the mouth and tissues that support the teeth
  • Diseases of the respiratory system
  • Inflammation of the nose
  • Eye diseases and inflammations such as Glaucoma
  • Chronic renal failure
  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Chronic infections of the skin or the outer part of the ears due to bacteria or fungal infections
  • Lymphoma
  • Sleep problems
  • Behavioral changes which may include sudden aggression
  • Gradual loss of vision and hearing
  • Disorders affecting the nerves of the legs and fingers

IVF therapy and prevention


Unfortunately, there is no cure for IVF, the only possible therapy is aimed at relieve symptoms of the infections and diseases to which the cat is subject, as they arise. It is therefore important to take the cat to the vet at the first symptom of any discomfort. Keep in mind that any type of ailment, no matter how stupid it may seem, or even the mere presence of parasites can be very dangerous for your cat's health.

There prevention of the disease through vaccine, although not 100% effective, it is reserved for cats at high risk of contracting the disease. Make the test to verify the existence of the disease before administering the vaccine is important, since it can produce a false positive when given early.