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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 3912
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)
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Dr. (Nekovet) , My new Cat Bailie has fiv and he has had

Customer Question

Hi Dr.B (Nekovet) , My new Cat Bailie has fiv and he has had diarrhea ever since i got him .I had his stool checked and he has a parasite that starts with a c. He is on probiotics and also the doctor gave him this liquid to take and it has to be repeated in 2 weeks .I read that FIP can have the same symptoms ? He had a full blood panel that was great with a little elevation in the white blood cells but the doctor said she isn't concerned at all. What do you suggest i feed him ? If he did have FIP is that deadly and can Sweetie get it ?Nancy
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi Nancy, Is this another cat besides Loki?Does this wee one have coccidia or cryptosporidia?Did you know he had FIV when you took him (since I am thinking Sweetie doesn't)?Did your vet just test a general blood profile? Where the globulins, proteins, or albumin abnormal ?How is he otherwise?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Oh No I changed Loki's name to Bailie. yes he has Coccidida. Yes i knew he had FIV but i was reassured by my vet that there was no concern unless they got into a mojor fight and the other cat gave Sweetie a deep wound. I think she gave him a throrough test. and he is excellent otherwise very playful , maybe too playful as the 2 times i tried to get the guys together he runs after sweetie and needless to say ,Sweetie is so pissed. He hates the other cat and i am so worried about Sweetie . I just hope that they can learn to co exist. Also on another note Sweetie was givin the meds as well and the first time i gave it to him he threw it up .So the vet told me to try again which i just did and he drooled like crazy , and then had explosive diarrhea .I think that was due to upset stomach for stress of just giving that medicine its liquid and he had to take a lot because of his weight. Oh Dr.B i think i did the wrong thing by getting this other cat ,but i can't do anything about it now because i love him.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Oh Yea i forgot to mention that after he had the diarrhea he immediately threw up the medicine so there is now way i can treat this for him as there is no other meds i can give for this so they say ?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Fair enough, I just wasn't sure if there was another kitty instead. Now I have to be honest and say that I am not over the moon about this situation. Though while FIV+ cats can live in peace with other cats, we need to be really careful here. Any unrest with any fighting (where blood/saliva are exchanged) are a concern for disease spread. So, the person who claimed that only a "deep wound" was a risk is doing a disservice. Any wound, any bite, any scratch that breaks skin is a risk. So, if we had a peaceful situation like the one has had with Sammi, we would be fine. But if they are not getting on at this point, I wouldn't advise keeping this second cat. I know it is difficult and I don't say this without great thought but Sweetie isn't happy and even not being there I sense the feline unrest. And to add an FIV+ carrier status to the mix just isn't worth the risk. Otherwise, Coccidia is treatable but can be spread to Sweetie. So, it was right to be treated as well; though we may need to test him for coccidia is he cannot tolerate the treatment or consider an alternative coccidia drug. Since he has had such gut issues lately, I'd be tempted to test Sweetie to see if we do really need to treat or not. Finally, FIP is a syndrome of the feline coronavirus (FCoV). And while the virus can cause diarrhea and be spread to other cats (though endemic so most cats are already carriers), this doesn't sound like a case for FIP itself. Those cats are often very unwell (it does come in a dry form and a wet one where they get bellies of fluid) and often <2 years of age. As well, we usually will see the globulin/protein levels up, albumin down, and would expect an elevated alpha glycoprotein level if tested. But again FIP the terrible and often fatal syndrome isn't likely here. Best wishes and I do apologize for feeling Bailie isn't the right fit here with Sweetie,Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Oh Boy Dr.B , I just can't give him up now.It would break my heart and he is such a loving sweet cat. I just can't get rid of him .Are you thinking that Sweetie will never be able to co exist with him ? If i had it to do all over again i wouldn't have done it but i just can't passed this cat back again he has been passed around to much and i have come to love him now and so has Mark (my husband). Wow ,i can't believe my vet gave me wrong information on this ,she said that everything would be fine as long as they didn't get into a major fight that caused a eep wound to Sweetie. I am going to have to tell her that i am not happy that she misleading .Thats such a drag .One more question, if Sweetie did get it , wouldn't it take years to get sick from it .I did a lot of reading on it myself and there tends to 2 2 trains of thought.Nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi again,No one but Sweetie can know if they will be able to co-exist.My concern is that the claims undersold the risk; probably because he has been passed around so much through no fault of his own. And if it was your vet, then I have to say I am surprised. I appreciate I may know more than the average vet on feline viruses (I have been involved in research on a number of feline viruses over the years; with FIV being where the bulk of my research prior to vet school was) but they should know better. Because while healthy FIV+ cats shed less virus in their saliva then sick FIV+ cats, any penetration of the skin could lead to infection. No one has studied a correlation to wound depth (as it'd be unethical to wound cats to see at what point infection could occur) but any bite or scratch is a risk. And that isn' t a fair situation to put Sweetie or yourselves in.Otherwise, in regards ***** ***** question there, I am very much in the camp that FIV+ cats often live full lives and its not something I'd put a cat to sleep for (as some vets do). Still, they can be at higher risk of infections due to immune system weakness (something Sweetie doesn't need) and there is an increased risk of lymphoma. And while most do live full normal lives and only have terminal signs in older age, we cannot predict when that will happen so some cats may develop terminal signs months after infection as opposed to years. So, again its a risk and a worry. And while they may get along eventually, I do just worry about Sweetie with all he has been through and the stress/upheaval that sounds to be causing bother here.Please take care,Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
OH no ....... so you think i could be killing Sweetie ,don't you ?Nancy
I am sick to my stomach.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Please don't panic about this. I don't like being a wee black rain cloud here but I do have to warn you of the risks.Now I am not saying you are killing him at all. I am saying he is in a stressful situation with the new cat and if they do fight there is risk of him contracting the virus. So, I'd be inclined to separate the two and divide time in the main area of the house/with you between them as you try to help them cope with one another. If they can find peace, all may be well. Its just Bailie's being FIV+ means we need to take this even more slowly and seriously to avoid any risk for Sweetie.Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I too your advice and have been keeping them apart .It was yesterday when Sweetie can in and went upstairs and Bailie ran after him .But all in all they are kept apart. I just hope Sweetie will be able to co-exist with him .He doesn't want to fight with Sweetie ,he just wants to be friends.Nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
I hope they can too. It is not with a light heart that I said what I did. I do just have to have Sweetie's best interests in mind, if you know what I mean. :)Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I know what you mean .I am so worried about Sweetie .I just hate the fact that he is not comfortable in his own home . Also i wanted to mention to you that i tried giving Sweetie the meds for the coccidida and he drooled heavily and then had diarrhea and then threw up the stuff. I know he is under stress ,that is what is causing the loose stool. He doesn't always have that it is most times just soft. I am giving him probiotics . I already had hie stool tested and they said that there may have been coccidida but they were not really sure. So since Bailie tested pos they wanted to treat Sweetie as well.Nancy
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't know what they will give him now ,so you say that there are other meds they can give that are not liquid ?nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi again,There are other treatment options. Though if they aren't sure about the coccidia, perhaps speak to them about sending the sample to the lab if they did an in-house test. Just since we'd not want to throw drugs at him if we don't need to. Especially with all he has been through.Best wishes,Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Exactly i totally agree. 1 More question about Bailie , he has had diarrhea ever since i got him 1 month ago . He had the medication 4 days ago and he still has diarrhea. should that medication already have worked ? what can i do to make his stool firmer any ideas ??nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Its not uncommon for it to take time to settle post-treatment. Coccidia is one of those protozoa that damage the gut a bit when there. So, we need to give the gut healing time on top of clearing it. Therefore, they should improve but can need a few weeks to get back to normal (especially if this was going on a while). Though in the meantime, easily digestible diets, probiotics and fiber supplementation can help the gut digest as best it can and settle sooner.All the best,Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
O.K this is it ..really this time ;) If i were to give both cats metacucil (powder form ) how much would i give each cat .Sweetie is 18 lbs and bailie is 10 lbs.Thanks
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
No worries,We tend to give it based on per cat as opposed to weight. So, we’d use 0.25tsp unflavoured Metamucil mixed into food (not given directly since it expands in contact with fluids) every 12-24 hours. Have a great day and best wishes to the lads,Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Dr.B thanks a million .i will let you know how they get on .Have a nice night
Nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
You are very welcome, my dear. :)Dr. B
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Dr.B I just wanted to send this to you and hear your thoughts.
http://www.catster.com/lifestyle/cat-health-vet-study-fiv-positive-cats-living-togetherNancy :)
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Dr.B , I hope you don't think i was being mean sending you this link .It wasn't my intention at all. I respect all your advice . I think you are a fantastic Vet. I just wanted to see what you thought of this article.nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Good evening,I am not offended in the least and actually know Annette personally and am familiar with the cohort of cats she uses in her studies (they were actually some of the sample donors for my study). Though you need to understand that the fundamental key thing about FIV+ and FIV- cats co-existing is their getting along. I have no qualms at all with mixed FIV household, but if the cats don't get along there is risk. As well, this terminology of "deep bite" is a dangerous one. No one has studied how deep a bite needs to be, so one cannot assume that a shallower bite (whatever that may be) is not harmful. So, I can tell you from research I have been involved in (since Glasgow is a hub for FIV research) that while healthy FIV+ cats shed less virus then sick ones; they still do shed so any break in skin is a risk. It may be less then a "deep bite" but it is not a no risk situation. That is all.Please know I wasn't saying that he has to go absolutely because of his FIV+ status. I am just saying that if they cannot form a truce like Sammi and Sweetie did, then we will have situation where there is risk no matter the bite wound depth. And we can be sure about bite wound depth because it would be unethical to subject cats to that kind of study to find out if you now what I mean.Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I get it . I really do .I am just praying that they are gonna be able to co-exist .Bailie is so sweet not aggressive one little bit .Sweetie isn't aggressive either he just hisses and growls and doesn't want to be in the same room as Bailie. I am hoping that things will get better . But until then i will not leave them alone in the same room together I wouldn't take that risk.Have a nice nightNancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
I hope so too. :)Though until it does, separation is key (letting them smell each other through doors and such is good though to help desensitize them to one another) since we do want to be safe for Sweetie.Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Totally .I do that all the time i even bought the felliway spray .Although i am not really sure the proper way of using it .I ahve just been spraying in around Sweetie .How would you advise me to use it to get the proper results ?Nancy
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi again,Usually we will spray it on cat beds, furniture, etc. that they are in close contact with. If he wears a collar, you could spray it onto that as well (or there are collar based preparations) since it would allow him to take it wherever he goes. :)Dr. B.