Tips to Protect Your Cat from Feline Herpes Virus Prevent your cat from catching Herpes

BY | January 04 | COMMENTS PUBLISHED BY
Tips to Protect Your Cat from Feline Herpes Virus

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KONG Active Feather Teaser Catnip Toy

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Learn more about symptoms, causes, and treatment options for Feline Herpes Virus.

The feline herpesvirus-1 (FHV-1) affects the upper part of the respiratory tract and parts of the eye in cats. It causes sneezing and nasal discomfort in cats. This infection can also affect the eye producing a conjunctivitis-like appearance.

Infected cats transfer the virus through eye discharge as well as secretions from the nose and mouth. If your pet cat interacts with strays, outdoor cats, and feral cats, this disease can easily be transmitted from them. You can also infect them if you contract Herpes.

According to PetMd, it is common in households with multiple cats, as the virus gets easily transmitted on contact. Providing space for individual felines to eat, sleep and groom can also reduce stressors.

Prevention of Feline Herpes

Here are a few steps you can take to protect your cat from feline herpes.

  • One of the best ways to protect your cat is by keeping them indoors. You can use interactive cat toys to keep your cat engaged with indoor activities. 

  • Outdoors, your cat will be exposed to other cats and can contract the feline herpes virus from them. Limit your cat's interaction with other cats while they are outdoors to reduce the risk of infection. 

  • Provide a separate cat litter box for each cat at home to ensure they don’t have to go outdoors to defecate. Use a scoop away cat litter to ensure a dust-free experience.

  • Sanitize all surfaces regularly, as the FHV-1 can be destroyed by disinfectants, as their survival duration outside hosts is only 18 hours.

  • Vaccinate your cat with a combination vaccine against herpes, feline calicivirus, and feline panleukopenia.

  • Ensure any new cat entering your home is vaccinated against the feline herpes virus. 

  • Reduce stressors in your homes, such as moving or remodeling, since these increase levels of stress hormones in both humans and cats. This could predispose them towards contracting diseases such as feline herpes virus. 

 If you see any sores on your face, mouth, or lip area, or if it's painful when you swallow, follow these steps.

  • Visit a doctor if you contract Herpes.

  • If you think you may have been exposed to HSV-1 or human herpes simplex type 1, wash your hands with soap and hot water immediately before touching anything. 

  • Sanitize all surfaces in your house which came into contact with you. 

  • Order your pet supplies and pet meds online instead of stepping out during this period to visit your pet pharmacy.

  • Protect your cat by staying at a distance till you have confirmation of your diagnosis. 

  • Play games that don’t involve close contact, like this active catnip teaser toy, by Kong toys for cats.

Symptoms of Feline Herpes

Symptoms of feline herpes include cough, fever, loss of appetite, sneezing, and eye discharge.

Treatment of Herpes

FHV-1 is a common virus, so treatment isn't usually needed. You can ask your vet for a nutritional supplement like Viralys to help them feel better. It contains lysine for cats and can be used to fight the Feline Herpes Virus.

As the care needed is supportive, ensure the cat food you provide is nutritious and supports recovery. Try well-known brands like Purina for cats to ensure the veterinary diet for cats is heavy on probiotics.

If your cat's symptoms are severe, your veterinarian may prescribe a generic version of human antiviral medication like famciclovir, as there are no antibiotic pet medications as such targeted for Feline Herpes. 

There are more than 45 million households in the United States with cats, as per the latest APPA National Pet Owners Survey. All households with feline residents should be made aware of this virus, and that helps prevent transmission through the adoption of precautionary measures.

The key to keeping your cat happy and healthy is to make sure that they have a safe place indoors where they cannot come into contact with other animals or humans who may be carriers of this virus.

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