This here is Garfield, a recent rescue brought into Love & Hope Sanctuary after the hospice he had been living in had to shut its doors. He was living there as a Feline Leukemia patient, a disease which eventually (in a matter or months, and in some cases a few years) takes the life of the cat. Love & Hope has a room set up specifically for FeLV cats, so it’s no surprise that the sanctuary’s team agreed to give this little guy a home.
When the organization brought Garfield to his new home and retested him, as is protocol at the non-profit, his test came back negative. They double checked Garfield’s medical records with the hospice, which confirmed that he had indeed tested positive several years back and had been living with several other positive cats ever since.
Garfield was kept in isolation for six weeks, after which he was retested using the Indirect immunofluorescent antibody test, which is sent to a lab for a more thorough analysis. Again, Garfield;s tests came back negative! He was tested again, 60 days later, and was negative yet again. “We assume that a long time ago he tested positive but was never re-tested until he came to us. He obviously fought off this dreadful virus and must have the world’s strongest immune system as he did not contract the virus in subsequent years,” writes Love & Hope.
How amazing is that?! While I know this isn’t your standard case, it should give cat owners a little hope if their cats tests positive for FeLV. Obviously, still keep your pet isolated from non-FeLV cats, but don’t give up hope that your cats can’t fight off this virus, or at least live a long and happy life.
And can we get some researchers up to the Catskills to study this guy’s super kitty immune system? We need to bottle that!
If you or someone you know is interested in adopting this 8-year-old miracle, please contact Love & Hope.
Images: Love & Hope