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Notes

We started this project in Dec 2014 and, within a couple of months, received information of several hundred FIV cats. Now, two years on, we are contacting those early joiners asking for an update for the last two years. As these are received, we add the info to their profiles and amend the health graphs and statistics, so we are continually adding extra years of FIV experience to the data.

We are slowly working our way through from the earliest joiners, but if you have an FIV cat on the project, please feel free, at any time, to email us with updated information as to how your cat has been and we will add it to the data.

Building the project both with new cats as well as extra information from existing cats, all helps this project have more value.

Add a cat to project
To add your FIV cat to the project, please use this form

Photos
To add a photo of your cat to his/her profile, please email it to us.
Don't worry about size or cropping, we can deal with what you can send - max file size 8Mb please, or we may not receive it!

Updates
To update information for your cat's profile, please email us with the information and we will add it to the profile.



About us

Who are we, and
why are we doing this project?

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Who are we? - We are Bob and Barbara Hunt, of Catwork, a sanctuary in the UK for cats with special needs including FIV and FeLV positive cats.

Background - A little background about us may be of interest - we have run a sanctuary in the UK for 20 years now, for cats with special needs. Most of these cats have been either FIV or FeLV positive - I would add that we don't actually consider FIV cats as special needs, but when we started they were in mortal danger once tested positive for the virus, so we took them in - that is how the sanctuary became what it did.

Why this project? - In 2011 we produced a booklet about what we have learnt about FIV from the cats who had been in the sanctuary, and as part of that we produced a chart of the health history of the more than 80 FIV cats we had cared for at that time. Although quite basic in its format, this has proved to be of great interest, particularly to some vets, who have been surprised to see how little illness they have encountered over the years.

It is really that chart that has been the catalyst for what we are doing now on a much more detailed and larger scale with this project.

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The health implications of a cat having the FIV virus is a subject that generates many viewpoints and opinions. Most research came from the early days, soon after the virus was recognised (1986) and much of that was from studies using artificially infected cats, and before they had a chance to live out a natural lifespan (so not, in our view, truly representative of naturally infected cats).

Now that the virus has been known about for 30 years, and more and more FIV cats have been allowed to live their natural lifespan, we think it is time that we gathered as much 'real life' experience of FIV cats as possible.

Our aim is to build a database of naturally infected FIV+ cats living normal lives (anywhere in the world) so we can see what the health implications of the virus really are.

There are hundreds of people who have one or more FIV cats in their home, often living alongside other cats who don't have the virus.

FIV Forums and groups have postings from many with differing experiences, but those who post are usually those experiencing a problem for which they are seeking advice and guidance. Those with FIV cats who are healthy will rarely post, as they have no need to.

This can lead to an impression that there are proportionally more problems encountered by FIV cats than is actually the case.

Our objective is to build a health history of hundreds of FIV cats, whether healthy or not.

We want to get the balance as accurate as possible by building a picture of FIV cats' health in general. We aim to gather information from as many people as possible who have now, or have had in the past, cared for one or more FIV cats. We are asking as many people as are willing, to answer some simple questions and tell us as much as they can about the health or otherwise of each FIV cat they have experience of.

By gathering detailed information about hundreds of FIV cats, both their background and their health history, we should be able to provide a far more accurate impression of what others might expect from an FIV cat.

Real life information is far more important and relevant in our opinion than most detailed scientific studies which, by their very nature, have limited relationship to real life situations.

We are asking anyone who has an interest in FIV cats with a request for their stories. We provide all the resulting information in as useful a way as we can, so anyone can refer to this website and see just what having an FIV cat may involve - learning from the real life experience of all those who have the experience of FIV cats.

We aim to keep adding to the information over future years so the picture will continue to grow and become even clearer over time.

This is a 'living' project about FIV cats' lives!


If you want to know what FIV cats are really like -
   this is the place to find out

See the results so far


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