A Story from an FIV Cat Owner

An ode re. FIV cats


Dear Reader,

I’m not a cat person, I like dogs, but…………

Late Summer of 2005 there was an advertisement in the Comet Newspaper re. finding a home for a black cat with ‘special needs’. We read it but didn’t go any further. The ad appeared again, then after a discussion we made an enquiry.

The cat, Buster, had FIV (whatever that was) and needed rehoming. Because of his illness he was not allowed out and as we had enough room for a cat to lose itself (that is another story) we contacted North Herts Cats Protection. We were invited to meet the black cat at the fosterer's, and after Buster made me feel welcome with a warning ‘hiss’, we knew he was for us.

A year passed and Oz, another FIV cat that had such a bad attitude and was un-homable (named after Oz, the belligerent one from Auf Wiedersen Pet) came to reside with us. Buster sorted him out the first weekend.

Anyway, since then we have had a collection of boys - Sevvy, Zak, Brook, Kimi (a kitten), Ollie and Rocky come to stay with us, and all FIV’s. Along with 2 non-FIV  ‘old timers’, Max and Woody – yet another story!

So what is the difference between a ‘normal’ cat and an FIV cat? Both give oodles of affection (on their terms!), keep us entertained, eat, sleep and use the scratch box. No difference apart from that they should not be allowed out and if they get into fights they can spread the disease.

Although it is rumoured FIV cats have shorter lives, all ours lived to about 15 years old apart from Brook who had throat cancer - which any cat can have.       

Some Cattery’s have reservations about FIV guests but as long as they have had their yearly jabs (the cats not the Cattery!) and are kept separate from other cats, no problem. If this is a concern, NHCP know of a Cattery that will accept the visitors. No problem there, then.

Special diet - No

Special needs - ours haven’t any, apart from love and attention which is a two way thing.

So if you want a house cat that will show their appreciation in normal cat ways and will not bring in dead mice, birds, leave mucky paw prints on arrival, there is no reason to avoid FIV cats.

As modified from the start …………I like cats (and dogs!)

Keith and Jackie Green
(With current help from Kimi, Ollie, Rocky and Max)