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Feline Leukemia Vaccination

Randy Walker DVM

What Is The Feline Leukemia Vaccination?

This is a vaccination which guards against the Feline Leukemia Virus (abbreviated Felv).

Do You Recommend The Feline Leukemia Vaccination?

Yes.  At Sun Lakes Animal Clinic we strongly recommend Feline Leukemia protection for all cats.

Is This The Same Vaccination As My Cat’s Annual Distemper 3-Way Vaccination?

No.  These are completely different diseases.

Why Do You Recommend The Feline Leukemia Vaccination?

Because Feline Leukemia is the leading infectious cause of feline deaths nationwide and is very prevalent in the Phoenix Metro area including Sun Lakes.

What Is The Protocol For The Feline Leukemia Vaccination?

We recommend an initial screening test (a blood test) to rule out preexisting infection with Feline Leukemia followed by an initial Felv vaccination.  We then booster this initial vaccination 3 weeks later.  Afterward a booster injection is given once-a-year and can be given along with the other annual vaccinations.

Why Do You Test The Patient For Feline Leukemia Before Giving The Feline Leukemia Vaccination?

We test for two reasons:  (1) although Feline Leukemia is usually ultimately a fatal disease, many patients can be harboring it in the early stages and not show symptoms yet and (2) vaccination will not be protective if the cat is already infected with the Feline Leukemia virus.

How Long Does It Usually Take To Get The Feline Leukemia Test Result Back?

We run the Feline Leukemia test here in our lab at Sun Lakes Animal Clinic so we get the results the same day, usually within minutes of taking the blood sample.

Which Cats Should Be Vaccinated For Feline Leukemia?

We recommend the Feline Leukemia vaccination for all cats (kittens) over 9 weeks of age.

- Randy Walker DVM
Sun Lakes Animal Clinic
May 15,2004

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