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PetWorld Blog

Cat Flu Can be Avoided with Vaccines and a Lot of Love

 by ben on  |
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Our pets are the love of our lives, they're part of our family. We provide shelter, food and medicine and in return they give us happiness and comfort. However, just like any other family member sometimes our pets get sick and it's up to us to make sure they feel better as soon as humanly or (catly) possible.

Cat flu is popular among cats, it's similar to a human cold. It causes cats to sneeze, have drippy noses, sore throats etc. It also causes mouth ulcers, loss of voice and more. Cat flu can be deadly for kittens and adult cats if they have other underlying diseases. This type of flu can also cause eye damage so severe that the cat can lose it's sight. Eye ulcers form and grow in size, until the sight of the animal is completely gone.

Cat Flu Caused by Viruses

Cat flu is caused by both viruses and bacteria. When it comes to the virus it is passed onto other cats by saliva and discharges from the eye. The virus can also be passed on to other cats through infected toys, feeding bowls, even clothing. There are two kinds of viruses that spreads cat flu. One is called calicivirus and the other is called feline herpes virus. There are so many different kinds of strains when it comes to calicivirus that it is difficult to control. Vaccines can only cover certain types of strains. The feline herpes virus is more dangerous and can causing eye ulcers etc. This all sounds pretty scary, right? But the good news is that, cat flu can be prevented. Cat owners can give their cats a vaccine to fight against this virus. Remember, when applying the vaccine, that two doses are needed, one will not do the trick. Once the two doses are taken, the animal needs to receive regular booster shots.

Bacteria that Cause Animal Flu

The different types of bacteria that can cause cat flu is Bordetella Bronchiseptica and Chlamydophila Felis. Bordetella Bronchiseptica is the bacteria that causes dogs to cough. It affects the lungs of the animal. The flu that is caused by this bacteria can be treated by antibodies. However, there is also a vaccine for this illness. Chlamydophila Felis is a bacteria which causes a cold. It is considered a mild cold. You will notice your pet having red eyes etc. Though their are antibodies and vaccines available, they will not fully protect the animal from getting the flu.

Fading Immunity

When it comes to cat flu, things can get tricky. Just because a cat does not show the symptoms of the flu, does not mean that he/she is not a carrier. That particular cat can pass the virus onto other cats through their eye droppings, saliva etc. At other times, a kitten can have immunity to the flu, for many years, then all of a sudden when the kitten is older, it will lose it's immunity. Once the kitten losses it's immunity, it will be subject to the illness just like any other cat. So be attentive to your young pet and watch for signs of fading immunity.

The hardest thing for a family who has a group of cats to do is determine who is the carrier of the flu. The best thing to do is to make sure each pet gets his/her scheduled vaccine. Also, make sure each one is eating properly and sheltered from the cold during winter months. Be sure to watch for runny noses. Checking saliva and other fluids with a cotton swab, for the presence of flu bacteria is always a wise choice.


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