Conjuntivitis/Herpes/URI- please help - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 10-31-2008, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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Conjuntivitis/Herpes/URI- please help

Ok, so...I told you all about the mother cat we rescued who subsequently gave birth to two cute little babies...well, turns out Nova had Herpes...she passed it on to the kittens who passed it on to our existing cat, Nermal...took them to the vet...Conjunctivitis caused by Herpes resulting in secondary upper respiratory infection...doc put them on 2 weeks twice daily of interferon eye drops, erthryomycin eye goop and oral clavamox antibiotics. I followed the directions, and at two weeks gave Nova away (was having severe allergies to her)...Now, a week after treatment, both Galaxy and Odie (kittens) are showing the same symptoms but worse than before treatment...Nermal is ok atm, but I worry about her getting sick again(she didn't do well on the clavamox)...

Is Herpes a lifelong thing? I worry now because I think the vet is going to charge us for more meds, even though we followed their instructions to a tee, and they still aren't better...and we don't have any money...if it comes to it, we may have to rehome the kittens to a rescue or to someone on CL...I really don't want to do that...are there any other treatment options that I can try with them?> Should the vet be charging us for a second round of treatments if what they prescribed didn't work (we dropped almost $200 bucks on the first set, we really don't have any more $$)

Please help
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 11-01-2008, 01:48 AM
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Re: Conjuntivitis/Herpes/URI- please help

Yes, herpes is a lifelong thing. Once a cat contracts herpes (and most cats do at some point), they continue to carry the virus forever. Usually the virus remains dormant, and the cat is seemingly perfectly healthy, but when the cat is stressed, the virus can flare up and cause a cold-like illness again. As you've noticed, herpes can affect the eyes, the upper respiratory system, or both. But it's typically more bothersome than dangerous.

Since herpes is a virus, antibiotics are useless against it. Antibiotics are often prescribed, however, to prevent the cat from developing a secondary bacterial infection while trying to fight off the virus flare up. One thing you can do at home that is often effective at preventing flare ups of herpes-related conjunctivitis is to mix 500 mg of l-Lysine into your cat's food each day. You can buy l-Lysine tablets OTC at any drug store, They're tasteless, so they're easy to crush and mix into some canned cat food.

Like I said, I believe that the vast majority of the feline population has been exposed to and carries herpesvirus. It's that common. The best things you can do for your kitty kids are to provide as stress-free a living environment for them as possible, to feed them excellent quality food, and to maintain routine vet care to keep their bodies healthy. Those are the strategies that will help keep herpes dormant in your household.

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