One of my renter’s cats, Blossom, tested positive for FeLV on a SNAP test at our Humane Society. She has 12 cats with exposure and I have 14. I had my vet send out the IFA test on Blossom and that came back negative. I also had 3 of my cats tested with the ELISA SNAP test and they were all negative. So here are my questions:

1. I know Blossom needs to be rechecked with both ELISA and IFA tests, but how many weeks from the first tests? Some articles say 1 month, some say 6 weeks, and another says 2 months. And the IFA test was done a week after the ELISA test. Is the retesting done the number of weeks after the ELISA or the IFA test date?

2. If I purchase the IDEXX SNAP tests online, will that negate any FeLV vaccine manufacturer’s warranty, since I am not a licensed veterinarian purchasing the test kits? I am now wanting to follow the manufacturer’s protocol of performing the test and giving the vaccines 3 weeks apart to receive their warranty in case any of my cats do still get FeLV even with the vaccine since the vaccines for FeLV are only perhaps 75% effective, so the manufacturer will pay the vet bills. I also want to get their warranty that if their vaccine causes FISS in the FeLV leg, they will pay any vet bills (I did have one cat get FISS in the rabies leg but didn’t use the Purevax for life since the cat was older so had the old shots earlier in life which negated the warranty and that surgery cost me big bucks at UPenn but it has been a year without reoccurrence).

3. Do you know which manufacturer’s FeLV vaccine has the highest percentage of cats which don’t get infected after receiving the vaccine? I did read about one Zoetis one called Versifel, used in Europe, which was in the 90% range, but can’t find that one used in the US.

Thank you.

Jean in NJ

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Asked on June 11, 2018 9:33 am
Private answer

At the Sanctuary we wait 4 weeks from the most recent test to recheck FeLV status. Vaccine warranties will require a record from a veterinarian of negative standing and administration of vaccines by a veterinarian. Self testing and self administration of vaccines would typically void any warranty from a manufacturer. We do not include a FeLV vaccine as part of our core vaccination program. We segregate FeLV positive cats.

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Posted by Dr. Gaylord Brown
Answered on June 13, 2018 10:38 am