Vaccination and group housing impact likelihood of feline calicivirus

Feline calicivirus (FCV) is a RNA virus that affects both domestic and exotic cats. Some of the clinical symptoms often associated with FCV include upper respiratory tract disease (URTD), oral ulcerations and salivation, and limping syndrome. But there are ways to reduce the chances of FCV, according to a new study.

Swiss researchers studied both healthy cats and cats suspected of having FCV (FCV-suspect cats) to identify the frequency of FCV and potential risks and protective measures against FCV. Their findings were published in BMC Veterinary Research on Nov. 15.

The researchers studied 200 FCV-suspect cats and 100 clinically healthy cats. FCV was found in less than half of the FCV-suspect cats. It was also present in some of the healthy cats, stressing the need to be aware of asymptomatic carriers.

Risk factors included intact reproductive status and group housing. Additionally, FCV-suspect cats were found to be less often FCV-positive when vaccinated. The researchers concluded that vaccination and reduction in group size limits FCV-related problems.  

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