What is it?
Is an infectious disease caused by a virus.
Who is susceptible to it?
Domestic and exotic cats.
How does it spread?
Spread between cats by direct contact or by short distance aerosolization (sneezing) of the bacteria.  Transmission through contaminated objects can also occur.
Time line from exposure to signs?
Signs begin 3-5 days post exposure.
What are the symptoms?
Signs include: nasal discharge, eye irritation, ulcers of the tongue, lips and nose.  Severe cases can develop arthritis and pneumonia.
Is there a test for it?
Not easily done.  Testing requires cultures from the mouth or lungs to be sent to he lab.  These cultures take 7 to 10 days to yield results.
How is it treated?
Usually treated as an outpatient.  Cats are placed on oral antibiotics and ocular medications.  Hospitalization is only needed if the development of pneumonia is suspected.
Cleaning the environment?
This virus is resistant to environmental degradation and to many disinfectants.  Areas should be cleaned thoroughly with bleach.
Is there a vaccine?
Yes.  The vaccine (Modified Live) is the “C” is the FVRCP vaccine.  The vaccine is given by injection and requires two doses 4 weeks apart with yearly boosters.  Kittens should receive a minimum of two doses after 12 weeks of age.  The vaccine does not prevent infection; rather it reduces the severity and the duration of the disease.
Risk for humans?
The Feline Calicivirus cannot infect people.
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