Calicivirus in cats: symptoms, treatment and prevention


Calicivirus is a very contagious disease, spread all over the place. Fortunately, calcitavirus of cats is no more dangerous to humans than any other species-specific infection. But the cats are less fortunate – if the disease is not detected in time, the pet may die.

Ways of infection

There are four strains known, and all four are found all over the world. The incubation period of calicivirusa is up to five days. A cat can get sick without even contacting the virus carrier, sniffing the feces of the transporter or resting on the grass stained with urine. The virus is transmitted by airborne droplets at a distance of a meter from the source. Calicivirus in people on the skin, hair and clothing maintains vitality for several days, so even pets, who are never on the street, are ill. The disease of cats calicivirus is transmitted through saliva, the discharge from the eyes, nose and genitals.

Cats after recovery for two months, and sometimes all life, isolate the virus into the external environment. Signs of calicivirus in cats may not manifest at all, and the animal in this period is already contagious. Therefore, it is important to be cautious when visiting exhibitions and other places of cats’ gatherings, since an apparently healthy animal can be a carrier of this disease. If the cat has calicivirus, it is necessary to immediately isolate it from other cats.


As a rule, calicivirus in kittens occurs in an acute form with pronounced symptoms. In adult cats with strong immunity, and in vaccinated animals, the disease proceeds in a latent form, signs are barely noticeable or absent.

Characteristic symptoms:

  • fever with a rise in body temperature to 40.5 ° C. It lasts about three days, then the temperature returns to normal;
  • efflux from the nose and eyes, initially transparent, then serous, very abundant and foul-smelling, increased salivation (chin and chest constantly moist);
  •  in the tongue, lips, in the sky and on the nose of the nose, multiple ulcers are formed, filled with fluid. They give discomfort to the pet: when the cat has calicivirus in the initial stage, it seems to the owners that the pet has choked or something stuck in his throat (the cat gently chews on the food and constantly coughs, as if wanting to get rid of the stuck bone). The gums become inflamed, swollen, pale or reddened. Vesicles burst, wounds hurt, bleed and heal for a long time. From the mouth of the cat it is unbearably smell rotten;
  • a clear decrease in appetite, lethargy, apathy to everything. Sometimes there is diarrhea, which gives way to constipation after two or three days. One-time vomiting is possible at the very beginning of the disease.

The disease of cats calicivirus often affects the respiratory tract – dry cough begins, sneezing, rattling in the chest, dyspnea, pneumonia, bronchitis, pulmonary edema. If the virus penetrates the brain, a week after the appearance of the described symptoms, the cat begins to have seizures, possibly coordination of movements, unsteady gait, aggressive behavior, irrational fear. Chronic calicivirus is asymptomatic, in rare cases, minor discharge from the nose and eyes, lameness, mild apathy. At the slightest exertion of immunity, the disease becomes acute.


The greatest danger is for small kittens and weakened animals. The incubation period of calicivirusa in newborn babies is less than a day. Unfortunately, if the cat has not been vaccinated against this virus, the probability of death of the litter is about 80%.

Adult pets with strong immunity survive in 70% of cases, if in time to contact the veterinarian and begin treatment of calicivirusa in cats until the moment when the condition of the pet is complicated by secondary infections. Elderly and weakened cats die in half the cases, even with correct and timely treatment.

Diagnosis and treatment

Symptomatic calicivirus in kittens and adult animals is similar to many other diseases, including gingivitis, panleukopenia, herpes and even rabies. Of course, it is necessary to pass tests to identify the pathogen, but treatment should begin immediately. And here everything depends on how experienced the veterinarian is. As a rule, first of all, they take away the symptoms and prescribe antibiotics of a wide spectrum of action. Since the treatment of calicivirus in cats will have a long and tedious, it is important to maintain the immunity of the pet: stimulants, vitamins. To combat dehydration and depletion, in the event of complete rejection of feed, nutrient solutions are prescribed.

It is extremely important that the treatment of calicivirusa in cats is not interrupted after a visible improvement in the condition. Sometimes after two or three days the cat seems completely healthy. The owners stop torturing the pet with injections, the disease returns, and if there is a chance of recovery, there is very little chance of recovery.

Care of the convalescent cat

Incompetent people distribute through the network and through “word of mouth” radio information that calcitvirus of cats is dangerous to humans. It is not true. The disease is species-specific, that is, the virus affects only cats. It is absolutely safe for people, dogs and other pets. Therefore, do not be afraid of infection and protect relatives from a recovering cat, whose fate largely depends on the quality of care procedures.

Like panleukopenia, cat calziviroz depletes the forces of the pit: it is important that the cat eat well and eat only digestible foods. The diet is prescribed by a veterinarian. It is equally important that the cat is kept clean – daily it is necessary to change the litter and to ventilate the room. It is necessary to remove the secretions from the eyes and nose in a timely manner, to clean the cohesive wool and to treat the sores in the oral cavity.


The word calicivirus in people who have experienced this disease causes almost panic. This is a very serious disease, accompanied by pain, exhausting the python and shortening the duration of her life. During treatment, the cat can not practically go away, because it needs constant monitoring of the condition, in careful care and moral support. Therefore, vaccination against calicivirus is the best preventive measure.

Of course, you need to protect the cat from unwanted contacts and observe hygiene, but since the disease is very contagious, even ideal conditions of detention do not guarantee safety. Vaccination is carried out annually, the drug is better to choose complex. Kittens are vaccinated at the age of nine to twelve weeks.



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