Cats are truly incredible creatures. I mean, take Mr. Spock for example. No one, it seems, has bothered to tell him that cats do not like water. Each morning he runs into to the bathroom as soon as he hears the shower turn on and sits just outside the shower curtain poking his head in and out of the spray. Once he decides he is completely clean and ready for the day he scurries in and climbs up onto the dresser to stare at you (more like glare at you) until you finally pull open the curtain so that he can waste away the morning trying to reach the birds at the feeder outside the window. He is full of attitude too! He refuses to drink from his own bowl of water, preferring instead to reach up and drink from the dog’s dish – much to the dog’s dismay. But let me tell you, if you are sick or sad or mad, he will climb up onto your lap and snuggle for hours on end.
The enjoyment that cats bring is endless. Which is what makes protecting them from Feline AIDS all the more important. Feline AIDS is an immunodeficiency virus (FIV) that works along the same lines as human AIDS. This retrovirus attacks the cat’s immune system making it unable to respond to infection and disease correctly. They are prone to developing infections and cancers, but at the same time seem healthy due to the fact that their immune systems refuse to respond to the threat. The virus begins by inserting a copy of itself directly into the DNA of its host cell where it can remain dormant for years.
This virus is typically passed from cat to cat through the saliva. A bite wound or scratch from an infected cat is enough to transmit this disease. While there is a vaccine on the market that can reduce the risk for high risk cats, it can lead to false positives so it remains somewhat controversial. However, it’s a great start in the fight against feline AIDS. Other considerations should be made in an attempt to protect your furry friend from this disease. Be sure to quarantine any new cats entering your home until they have been tested. Spaying and neutering your cat is the single most important thing you can do to help prevent this disease. This procedure often mellows the cat reducing its tendency to fight thus reducing his risk to bites and scratches. Also, allowing your cat to be an indoor pet will greatly reduce his chances of this disease.
Here at Sandwich Isle Pest Solutions one of our main goals is a safe healthy environment, and while we do not treat cats for this dreaded disease (your veterinarian will do that) we do care deeply about the things that effect our community adversely and diligently work to increase awareness to these issues. The increased population of feral cats here in Hawaii means that the spread of this disease among cats is also highly increased.
Do your part to protect your cat against feline AIDS, and we will do our part to help protect you from the harmful effects of pests. Together we can make a difference in the health of our community.