Calicivirus is a disease often referred to as FCV. Cats that are affected by this virus will experience mild flu-like symptoms which rarely cause serious problems. Owners usually vaccinate their cats for this disease. Here is everything you need to know regarding calicivirus.

Cause

The virus that causes calicivirus in felines is spread through contact with saliva, nose discharge, or eye discharge. The virus can also be spread through contact with infected feces. Cats infected with the virus can spread it to other cats even if they shown no symptoms of illness themselves.

Signs

You should know that various strains of the virus can cause calicivirus in cats. This will lead to various symptoms. Most cats experience symptoms such as eye and nose discharge. Fever, loss of appetite, difficulty breathing, and pneumonia are other common signs. Mouth or paw sores are also a common sign.

Diagnosis

Upper respiratory infections cause some of the same signs as calicivirus. It’s important that the vet reviews your cat’s medical history and takes note of his signs. Lab tests can also determine if your cat is infected with the virus.

Treatment

You will need to let the virus run its course. It’s important that your cat have access to plenty of fresh food and water. It’s important to provide soft foods if there are sores in the mouth. It’s also important to keep the nose and eyes free of discharge.

Cat calicivirus can also lead to pneumonia and severe cases may require oxygen therapy. Antibiotics can treat or prevent secondary infections, while eye drops help clear eye discharge.

Prevention

Clothing, litter boxes, and food dishes can all harbor the virus that causes this disease. The virus is capable of surviving up to ten days in the environment. Many common household disinfectants aren’t strong enough to kill this virus. It’s important to get your cat vaccinated.

Author: Darrin Swain