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Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV)

By: Dr. Debra Primovic

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Other medical problems can lead to symptoms similar to those encountered in FeLV-infected cats. It is important to exclude these conditions before establishing a diagnosis of FeLV infection.

  • Feline ehrlichiosis (a disease caused by bacteria called rickettsia which live inside the cells of the animal).

  • Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) (a viral infection of cats that causes fever and abnormal function of the nervous system, eye, liver, and kidneys).

  • Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) (a viral infection of cats similar to AIDS in humans).

  • Feline infectious anemia, also known as Hemobartonella felis (a parasite that infects the red blood cells of cats).

  • Hemolytic anemia (a disease characterized by destruction of the cat's red blood cells).

  • Histoplasmosis (a disease caused by a fungus in the environment that can infect the lungs and other organs of pets).

  • Leukemia (cancer of the blood-forming tissues of the body).

  • Lymphoid hyperplasia syndrome (a non-cancerous abnormal proliferation of lymphocytes in the lymph nodes of the body).

  • Lymphosarcoma (Lymphoma) (cancerous proliferation of lymphocytes in the lymph nodes and other lymphoid tissues of the body).

  • Mast Cell Tumors (a tumor arising in the skin or occasionally in the spleen or intestinal tract of cats).

  • Multiple myeloma (a tumor arising from the antibody-producing cells of the body called plasma cells; also called plasma cell tumor or plasma celly dyscrasia).

  • Myeloproliferative disease (cancerous proliferation of white blood cell precursor cells in the bone marrow).

  • Cancers of tissues other than lymph nodes and bone marrow.

  • Rocky Mountain spotted fever (another rickettsial disease).

  • Sepsis (bodywide bacterial infection).

  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (a systemic autoimmune disorder affecting the skin, kidneys, joints, and blood-forming tissues).

  • Thrombocytopenia (a decrease in blood platelet concentration).

  • Thymoma (cancer of the thymus, a blood cell-producing organ found in the chest of young animals).

  • Toxoplasmosis (a disease caused by a protozoan parasite that affects the nervous system, eye, and other organs).

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