- The Feline Immuno-deficiency Virus is a slow virus that affects a cat's immune system over a period of years.
- FIV tests are tests for Antibodies, not the actual virus and false positives are common.
- FIV positive cats do not need medicine and can live normal, healthy lives of 15 years or longer with proper care and nutrition.
- FIV is a cat-only disease and cannot be spread to humans or other non-felines.
- FIV is not easily passed between cats. It cannot be spread casually - like in litter boxes, water and food bowls or when snuggling and playing.
It is rarely spread from a mother to her kittens.
- The virus can be spread through blood transfusions, badly infected gums, or serious, penetrating bite wounds, but bite wounds of this kind are extremely rare, except in free-roaming, unneutered tomcats.
- A neutered cat, in a home, is extremely unlikely to infect other cats and can safely live with other cats if properly introduced.
- Many vets are not educated about FIV since the virus was only discovered 15 years ago.
- FIV positive cats should be kept indoors to minimize their exposure to other diseases, potential illnesses and stress. Colds and other respiratory infections should be treated as soon as they arise.