Every animal including a cat does not escape from disease, from normal light diseases such as flu to serious diseases such as viruses. As pawrents we understand that diseases or viruses coexist with us in daily life, and we try our best to keep our furbabies to stay happy and healthy. But, some cats have to face diseases that endangered them and as pawrents we try our best to take care of them to ease their pain and try our best to give them the best treatment so they do not have to face the dangerous viruses. And this is the story of Ten, a four-month-old kitten from Japan who is currently fighting and surviving FIP.
Hello, pawrents and readers my name is Ten and I am trying my best to survive from FIP!
What is FIP and what are the symptoms?
FIP stands for Feline Infectious Peritonitis, also known as the feline coronavirus. According to the College of Veterinary Medicine of Cornell University a cat who gets affected by FIP does not show any symptoms in the first phase or stage they get infected, but there are other signs which can determine if your cat has FIP by showing signs which considered mild in the first phase such as diarrhea and/or difficulty breathing that is considered as mild symptoms because it recovers spontaneously, as pawrents we have to be cautious with these symptoms and take it seriously, if you are concerned you can do a routine blood analysis for your cat to see if there are any possibilities your furrbabies carries FIP. However, the pawrents of Ten acknowledge there is something wrong with him because they found that the area of Ten's stomach got swollen, and they decided to take Ten to the vet.
The first time Ten got infected he lost his appetite, barely pooping, and he acted languidly. The symptoms that he has are also part of the FIP or Feline Coronavirus symptoms, the vet who takes care of Ten cases suggests taking a CFN treatment. CFN is a tablet for immune system stimulants, since FIP targets the immune system of the cat a CFN treatment is necessarily needed. Felines that got infected by the virus, their immune response through which antibodies against the virus are produced within 7-10 days of infection. Another temporary treatment for cats that got infected by FIP is therapy, but it has to be approved by the FDA (Food and Drugs Administration).
(Ten just started his CFN treatment today)
Is FIP a dangerous disease? Is it curable?
In most cases, FIP can be considered a fatal disease and cannot be cured. However, there are ways to minimize the risk for the infected cats, by giving a supportive treatment can be helpful and may improve the quality of life for the cat and able to extend its longevity. And, there is no fixed medicine that is able to cure FIP. However, there is temporary medicine that is able to stimulate and help the immune system such as cyclophosphamide, or experimental medicine such as polyprenyl immunostimulant (PI).
If my cat got infected by FIP is there any vaccine for it?
Some drug manufacturers have been trying to create and develop a vaccine for FIP.
However, due to the misunderstanding method of how the virus has been transmitted the success of the vaccine itself is not very certain. And, most vets would not recommend you to give your cats FIP vaccines, but some of the vets may advise you to do one for your cat.
Does it mean that if I have other cats in the household they could be at risk?
The answer is yes! your other cats in the same household can still be at risk, what you can do to prevent the risk or to minimize it is by separating your cat cage between the healthy cats and the ones that carry the virus, another thing that you can do is that by keeping the litter box clean and keeping it on adequate numbers of litter boxes could help to minimize the exposure of the virus to your other cats.
As a cat parent who just knew about FIP can I prevent my cat from it?
Unfortunately, there is not much you can do to prevent your cat from having FIP and it is difficult to actually prevent it as well since there are many factors that play role in the development of FIP itself. The very least that you can do is by doing a regular check-up with the vet, and up to date with the schedule of your cat's yearly vaccinations.
(Ten relaxing with his mom)
Based on the information that we share about FIP or also known as the feline coronavirus, it is now your chance to spread awareness about this virus, by sharing the information you could help thousands of cats that got infected by the virus.