Feline Leukemia - Contagiousness

Reply Mon 29 Dec, 2014 02:55 pm
Our home has evolved to being something of a homing beacon for wayward cats from the surrounding neighborhood (thanks principally to my wife).

A crew (litter) of kittens recently took up residence on our deck, which my wife has been gradually socializing to human contact. We've now transitioned three of the cats inside. All three of these newcomers have made the requisite trip to the local veterinarian office, gotten their various shots and vaccinations. Unfortunately, two of the three new guys tested positive for feline leukemia.

The vet went ahead and administered vaccinations to everyone, and two our existing inside cats were already vaccinated. My wife has been segregating these two guys that are infected downstairs in our basement - although this hasn't been a wonderfully optimal situation, either for us - or for the cats.

I guess my question is, if everyone has been vaccinated against feline leukemia in the house, and while I know at vaccination won't "cure" the two infected cats, is this segregation thing really necessary, as long as everyone has an existing vaccination - or can the leukemia carriers still transmit the illness to healthy cats? All of the cats are pretty sociable, and not prone toward fighting (just some standard play wrestling). I know this leukemia can't be transmitted to humans, but how contagious is feline leukemia for cats that have existing vaccinations?
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Reply Mon 29 Dec, 2014 03:06 pm
In short yes.

Even if your cats have been vaccinated there is a chance that they can still catch the virus.

More than likely the kittens Mother had it and passed it onto her babies.

These little ones may not have a long life span, up to 3 years no point taking any risks by letting them mingle with un-infected cats.

Your wife has a good heart loves animals and these kittens have some life because of her.

Play fighting a small scratch is all it could take.

Trust your wife and keep them separated.
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Reply Mon 29 Dec, 2014 03:14 pm
Hi, CDobyns.
We've had two wonderful veterinarians here at a2k - one who hasn't posted for a long time, and the other that I've not seen participating in veterinary questions, wildly busy guy as it is. We're careful here not to give medical advice to man or beast, but someone here might have had personal experience with this.

Your best/fastest bet would be to contact your veterinarian's office. Good luck!
Reply Mon 29 Dec, 2014 03:16 pm
but someone here might have had personal experience with this.

Put's hand up... Hence why I replied.

But yes, checking with his Vets in his own personal circumstance would be the best idea.
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Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2015 06:01 pm
I'm still here, kids.....feline leukemia vaccine (Leukocell) is really quite effective in FeLV prevention. Of course, there is no such thing as 100% efficacy, but this one is pretty close. Keep in mind that, the last time I checked, there was still no vaccine for FIP or FIV, which are both common in feral cats or those who spend most of their time outside encountering roaming toms. FeLV is spread through the saliva, so shared food sources are the most common source of infection. Since I haven't had a pharm rep bring me up to speed on small animal products for fifteen years, though, my information could be pretty antiquated.
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2015 06:13 pm
Hi, glad you found this and posted!
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