|Info on Cat Aids|
Feline aids, or the immunodeficiency virus, wreaks havoc on your cat's immune system. The virus will render the system ineffective, so your cat will have an increased risk of developing various other diseases.
It can be quite difficult to spot the signs of aids in cats in the initial stages. For one, felines are very capable of hiding illness from potential predators and owners alike. Also, cats infected with the virus may not show symptoms for several years after being infected. Lethargy and appetite loss are two of the most common signs of the initial stages of feline aids. Cats may also develop diarrhea or fevers. The lymph nodes may also start swelling up.
Once feline HIV progresses though, symptoms will appear more serious. Cats start losing weight. Sores and lesions can also appear around the eyes and mouth. Since their immune system is compromised, cats will also suffer chronic infections. The leukemia virus commonly infects cats concurrently with HIV.
The first step in diagnosing aids in cats involves taking a complete medical history. Since cats that are allowed to roam outside frequently have a higher risk, the vet will also ask about your pet's environment. A blood test is necessary in order to diagnose feline aids. It's not possible to detect the virus in the blood. However, the body makes antibodies in an attempt to battle the virus, and these antibodies can be detected.
Just because the test for feline HIV comes back positive doesn't always mean that your cat is infected. False positives can occur for a few reasons. The main way is if your cat has ever been vaccinated for the illness. If the mother passes antibodies to her kittens via the milk, then they may test positive also despite the fact that they're aren't infected with the virus.
Just like with the disease that affects humans, there is no treatment for feline aids. Cats can live for quite a few years without showing any symptoms of illness at all. The fortunate ones can live for a decade or so without experiencing problems. Once symptoms appear though, supportive care will eventually become necessary.
There is a vaccination for aids in cats, so it's best that owners take advantage of it. Since getting into fights with stray cats is a primary transmission method, you should also do your best to limit the amount of roaming that your cat does.