FELINE VIRAL RHINOTRACHEITIS (FVR)
More fear than harm!
You have chosen your little kitten and today is the big day of departure! Kitty is fine and finally he is with you in his new home! He adapts well, and even takes his ease and it is love for everyone!
It’s been a few days since your new companion arrived. You notice that he sneezes a few times during the day. A few days later, you find him quieter, his breathing becomes more difficult. You decide to go see a veterinarian and it’s the right decision.
During the consultation, you are informed that your kitten has a feline viral rhinotracheitis. The name of this virus is so impressive that you panic! And of course the first reflex will be to think that the breeder is responsible. This reaction, although comprehensive on your part, is not justified. But what does it eat in winter feline viral rhinotracheitis (FVR)? To understand it, there is nothing like comparing it with ourselves.
Although its name is scary, it is nothing more than the equivalent of the flu in humans. It should be known that 80% to 90% of cats are carriers of feline herpes. It is this strain of herpes that is responsible for what will be called FVR. Just like the flu, it spreads easily to contact between felines. The treatment for your cat will be ten days of L-lysine powder or paste and everything will be back in order. In some cases, your vet will prescribe antibiotics to treat secondary infections that may be caused bu that virus. Although uncomfortable, this virus is easy to treat and rare are the complications. No long-term impact on the health and development of your kitten.
But why did your kitten developed a rhino a few days after his departure and not at the cattery?
Simply because the rhinovirus was injected during his vaccination. Just like the influenza vaccine in humans, some cats will develop injected FVR others not. The vaccines used are usually dead vaccines. This means that their full impact will be 7 to 10 days after the administration of it. In addition, changing the environment is an important stress for your kitten. This stress will have the effect of dropping the immune system of your new companion of life which will contribute to the development of this sudden FVR. His defense system is weakened so he is unable to fight the virus he is carrying.
Is the breeder responsible?
As an animal health technician and cat breeder for 11 years, for me the answer is No! However this answer is valid for good breeding. Of course it does not include cat factories you’ll understand. It is impossible for the breeder to predict which kitten will develop a FVR when leaving his breeding. Always keep in mind that when you buy a kitten, you do not buy a piece of furniture. There are millions of different possibilities and reactions for a living being. And although the breeder does everything in his power to control what he can control, he can not control the uncontrollable.
Chronic or non-chronic?
It is said of a cat that he is a chronic rhinovirus carrier when he repeatedly develops FVR in need of antibiotic treatment. Episodes infection of will vary and will return, depending on the cat, a few times in infancy or throughout his life. We will notice more pronounced episodes at the changes of season and as soon as your cat or kitten, will undergo a stress. Change of food, travel by car, arrival of a new animal, moving etc …
Kittens and cats with chronic carriers are usually kittens whose immune system has not been able to fight the first contact with this virus. They then developed an infant FVR, before the usual vaccination.
Non-Chronic carrier kittens are cats and kittens that will develop a FVR following vaccination and caused by it, but will not have other episodes in the years that follow.
As a cat and kitten owner, maintaining a good immune system is crucial. Do not hesitate to contact me if you want information on what you could use to help your cat develop and maintain a good immune system throughout his life.
Did you know?
Like some cats with herpes, many humans also carry herpes. If the cat develops a feline viral rhinotracheitis, the human meanwhile, will develop cold sore! Oh yes! L-lysine can also help you as a person to reduce the development of this herpes!