Signs of Feline Leukemia

Knowing the signs of feline leukemia is an important step towards keeping your cat healthy.

Feline leukemia is a disease that all cat owners pray their pets will never get, as it is a deadly virus that can be relatively easily spread. If you have a cat, it's a good idea to be aware of the signs of feline leukemia to ensure that you can get the cat treated as soon as possible and to avoid the spread of the disease to other pets in the home.

The symptoms of feline leukemia all depend on the type of virus, and the stage it's at.

After the first few weeks of an infection, there are some general symptoms to look for:

  • Anemia
  • Blood in stools
  • Chronic, recurring infections
  • Less of appetite
  • Reduced stamina
  • Depression
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Excessive drinking and urinating
  • Infertility
  • Jaundice, yellowing of the skin
  • Low grade fever
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Neurophathies - Causes the size of the cat's pupils to change. One will be dilated, while the other is constricted.
  • Hind limb paralysis - The cat's back legs may become paralyzed. This could be temporary or permanent, and will involve the loss of feeling in the bladder and bowels.
  • Weight loss

Common signs in cats that are pregnant

  • Fading Kitten Syndrome (FKS) - The kittens develop symptoms leading to death within the first few weeks of life
  • Increased chance of bacterial and viral infection
  • No appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Growth is slowed down
  • Fetal re-absorption - When the fetus dies and the liquid is absorped
  • Miscarriage
  • Wasting of the Thymus Gland - "Wasting" is when a disease causes muscle and fat tissue in the body to "waste" away to nothing.

30% of infected FeLV cats will develop lymphoid and myeloid tumors

The signs are as follows:

  • Constipation
  • Cloudy eyes
  • Inflammation of intestines
  • Liver or kidney disease
  • Diarrhea
  • Neurological irregularities
  • Vommiting
  • Respiratory problems

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