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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My cat Mo has been having sneezing fits and his eyes are red rimmed. He has no discharge from either the eyes or the nose but every so often he starts sneezing and sneezes about 5 or 6 times in a row. He sprays a lot when he does this. He seems to be ok otherwise. Does anyone have any idea what might be wrong with him.

He is up-to-date on all his shots. In fact I thought maybe it was the vaccine that caused this; he just got his boosters two weeks ago. This has been going on for about a little over a week.

I also want to add that Mo was exposed to a FelV cat for about 2 weeks. He
has had the vacinations but they say they are only partially effective. So I've
been worrying about that, too.

Thanks,
annb
 

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He might very well have the virus. My cat Maleke caught it from my other cat Magic when I brought him home from the shelter. Maleke's acts up WAY more than Magic's, and he is on antibiotics as I write this!

Your cats symptoms sound exactly like my cats. He would sneeze a bunch of times in a row, very wet sneezes. His eyes were red as well. I took him to the vet, and he prescribed anitbiotics and eye drops. Neither are expensive, and it will make your cat feel better so it's worth it. He is going through his second bout with this virus right now, and this time the symptoms were coughing and a runny eye. Again, the antibiotics cleared this up as well.

I suggest take your kitty to the vet. Your kitty sounds like he or she has a cold!!
 

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Hey Maleke,
Is it really a "virus"? I know that's what it's called, but if it is a virus, why do antiobiotics help? With people anitbiotics won't do anything for a virus, only fight bacterial infections, is it different with cats?

I'm sorry that your cats have to go through this, but very glad that you are working through it well!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I actually have 4 cats of my own--Mo, AJ (brothers), Squirt and
Miss Priss. They have all been exposed to the FelV cat I was
fostering. I work with a shelter for cat rescue and they had some
lazy people who were taking shortcuts. They said the cats were
tested for FelV/FIV but they weren't! Mo and AJ had the vaccines
but Squirt and Miss Priss didn't. They are all rescues and had
been healthy up until now. I've just been dreading getting
the test done. The vet wants to wait until September.

Since I'm not going to get rid of them even if they have FelV,
I don't know why I need to get the test. Are you saying one
of your cats has Felv? How is he doing?
 

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It must be the season because Frosty started it - got over it very soon however. He must have passed it to Cheerio now because she had a squinting eye last night plus tons of sneezes at a time + hoarse little meow : (
I had started to give her alternate pinches of L-Lysene and Ester C Powder but hadn't forced her to take them when she didn't like to...Well last night I took a syringe and mixed it in a a little bit of yougourt - there is already less sneezing and the eye is slighly watery - hardly any squinting. I am getting ready to give her some more tonight... I know the L-Lysene is ok for a few days but the Easter C Powder can be administered on a regular basis - a pinch added to their diet per day.
 

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Are we all talking about FELV or something different? Pardon me for my ignorance, but isn't FELV quite serious, unlike a URI that can be treated by supporting the immune system?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, it started out as sneezing fits but since my cats were exposed to FelV that came up. and I guess we kind of got off on a tangent. I have a feeling it may be FelV with Mo.

I give all my cats L-Lysine every morning and I have started giving them Ester-C. I heard about Transfer Factor and was considering that. I just
want to give them every advantage I can until I find out if they have FelV.
 

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There are lots of issues raised in this thread and I'll try to shed a little light on them all...

The original post refers to a cat with an apparent upper respiratory virus. In general, if the cat is eating and feeling fine, no treatment is needed, and the cat will get over it in 7-10 days.

Re antibiotics for a virus, it's quite true that antibiotics have no effect on viruses. Unfortunately, vets vastly over-prescribe them for viral diseases (as do human doctors!). The thought is that antibiotics will prevent a secondary bacterial infection from setting in, but in reality, this is very rare. While on antibiotics, the cat gets better, but it would do so anyway as the immune system revs up its response. However, it "looks" like the antibiotics are doing it, because they are being given at the same time.

Eye ointments are also (in most cases) simply topical antibiotics, although some of them also contain a steroid to reduce inflammation.

L-lysine (1000 mg per day for up to 5 days) and Vitamin C (100-200 mg per day) *are* effective for a lot of viruses, including the most common upper respiratory virus which is herpes. In any case, no harm done by giving them.

FeLV is also a virus, but that's really a separate issue. The vaccine is not 100% effective and can cause other problems, but in this case it's water under the bridge and not worth worrying about either way. The best defense against FeLV (or any other disease) is a healthy immune system. IMHO a healthy immune system is one that we have not damaged by over-vaccinating; one that is able to mount a vigorous response to other viruses (exactly as Mo is doing by producing appropriate symptoms to rid himself of the upper respiratory bug); and that is supported with top-notch nutrition.

The vet is correct in not testing Mo and the other cats now. You want to wait a few weeks while their systems process the virus and hopefully clear it (as 70% of healthy cats do, without any help from vaccines!). Right now they are probably all "positive" in that they have been exposed to the virus and are working on getting rid of it. Most likely they will be able to do that.

However, you should still consider testing them in a month or two, because if they do remain positive, there are many things you can do to help maintain their health by nutritional support of the immune system, reducing stress, and other treatments such as flower essences, homeopathy, etc. Many FeLV+ cats live long, happy lives.

I think that's everything, but remind me if I forgot something!

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Wow, DrJean, thanks for all the information. Today at noon I
went and got wellness canned food. I am going to try to decrease
their dry food by feeding them twice a day with canned.

Should I not give L-Lysine any longer than 5 days? I've been
giving it for about 4 months now! Squirt has the herpes virus
in his eye and my vet recommended keeping him on L-Lysine.

Squirt almost died in the shelter and I brought him home to
get him well and, you know how it is, I got attached, so he had
to stay :D Then I had to get Miss Priss as a same size/age
companion to him. None of the other cats have caught the
herpes virus so I just assumed the L-Lysine was helping to
prevent the shedding of the virus.
 

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My veterinary ophthalmologist friend says to give high dose (1000 mg/day) of Lysine for only 5 days, but you can give Lysine at a maintenance dose (250 mg, probably okay up to 500 mg) per day forever.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Get the test

I'm with Dr. Jean, do get the cats tested so that if they are positive you can give them the support they need.

I have 4 feluk + cats and they receive a monthly shot of Staph A. It's a drug that boots their immune system. They will take these injections the rest of their lives. I've had this drug bring feluk cats back when they were on their last leg, so to speak.

Dr. Jean, have you had any experience with this drug? I learned about it through my vet who went to MSU and one of her professor's did a study that showed it's effectiveness.

As far as the anitibiotics and their role in treating feluk cats, the way my vet explains it is, they help to boost the immune system just a bit to help the cat overall. I've had great results with the L-lysine also with my herpes cats. I have however started feeding them some raw meat (a source of L-lysine) and that seems to help also.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Mo and Viruses

BAck in August I posted about my cat Mo have sneezing fits and red eyes and all four of my cats being exposed to Feline Leukemia. Well, I have great news--I had them all tested and none were positive for the virus. I am so relieved. That's a terrible thing to anticipate for 4 months! Also, I upped Mo's L-Lysine to 1000 a day and his sneezing and red eyes cleared up in three days. No atibiotics were administered. Thanks for all of your concern and help.

Regards,
annb
 
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