When you go to adopt a cat, you might find that one or two have FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus). This virus impacts the immune system by depleting the number of white blood cells. There are plenty of misconceptions surrounding FIV, so these cats are often hard to rehome. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider making one part of the family.
FIV is Not Easily Transmissible
There's a myth that FIV cats are fine to adopt as long as you don't have any other kitties in your household. However, you can still adopt a cat with FIV and not worry about the virus spreading to your other cats. While problems such as FeLV (feline leukemia) can be transmitted through grooming, sharing food, and other forms of casual contact, FIV can only be transmitted between cats in the same household through deep bite wounds and sexual activity. Sterilized cats are extremely unlikely to engage in either activity.
FIV Cannot Be Spread to You
Feline Immunodeficiency Virus belongs to the same group as Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Given the fear and stigma that surrounds HIV, it's natural for prospective cat owners to be a little worried about adopting a cat with any similar problem. However, it's called 'feline' immunodeficiency virus for a reason – not matter what you do, FIV cannot be spread to humans. It only affects cats, so even dogs or other animals won't be in danger.
FIV Cats Can Live Long, Happy Lives
FIV can be a serious condition, but it's actually a very slow acting virus. As such, most FIV positive cats live a normal lifespan with no health problems. You may need to commit to medication and see the vet a little more frequently, but you're not going to be taking care of an animal that will only live a short life and require extensive surgery or veterinary attention. A cat with FIV is more or less like any other cat. That is so say, deserving of a loving home.
FIV Cats are Perfect as Indoor Cats
Cats with FIV can be let outside, but there's always a risk they'll bite another cat in a territorial dispute and pass the disease on. They're also most likely to encounter things that strain their weaker immune systems when let outside. That's fine since plenty of potential cat owners would prefer to keep their cat inside anyway. If you're looking for an indoor cat, it only makes sense to take home one with FIV.