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I have feline herpes, it safe for me to visit the groomers?

This forum is for cat lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your cat.

  
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Flossie!

40% fur 60%- attitude
 
 
Purred: Fri Apr 27, '12 3:05pm PST 
Hi everybody,

This has been a bit of a rough shedding season for Flossie and I, her freaky long fur has taken me a little while to get used to grooming properly, and she has a few matts that need tending to. This shouldn't be a problem except Flossie has feline herpes virus. She no longer sneezes, but her eyes still get weepy on occasion. Is it safe for me to take her to the groomers, or will it make other kitties there sick? I really want these uncomfortable matts off, but not if it means giving other kitties herpes. Are there any alternatives to a groomer (will some vets do this) ?
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Cesar

the orange one
 
 
Purred: Sat Apr 28, '12 4:41pm PST 
Hey Flossie, Cesar has the herpes virus too. he has 2 sisfurs and a brofur, they never caught it. you might want to check with your vet, but, i belive you can not catch herpes virus from another kitty(kitty to kitty), cesar is also on a pill for his herpes. are giving flossie lysine? depending on how bad she flares up, are you giving her anything? you should be ok taking her to the groomers.
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Flossie!

40% fur 60%- attitude
 
 
Purred: Sun Apr 29, '12 1:36am PST 
Yes, I give her lysine daily. She no longer presents any of the URI symptoms, but the conjunctivitis in her right eye has never fully cleared up- it gets worse any time something weird happens like getting uncomfortable mats on her chest frown. I remember being told that if she sneezed around a cat that was not vaccinated, that the cat could get sick. I'm not sure if her fur would also be contaminated because she licks it all the time? Thank you for your help! I will definitely check with the vet too smile

Edited by author Sun Apr 29, '12 1:43am PST

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Cesar

the orange one
 
 
Purred: Sun Apr 29, '12 8:38am PST 
Flossie, cesar has conjunctivitis too, he gets a 1/4 pill every 7-10 days, so, he gets no flare ups. if you or any other kitty is interested in what cesar takes, feel free to pawmail us.
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Alexis

never stops- talking
 
 
Purred: Sun Apr 29, '12 5:32pm PST 
i was diagoned with herpes as 3 months old kitten. our vet belived i got from being in a shelter enviorment. i used to have bad coughing spells and sneezing. i am two years old now mostly i just have sneezing spells now. i had to take lysine. its unknown if my sister nellie has it. how Do Cats Get Herpes?
The most common way for the herpes virus to spread is through contact with discharge from an infected cat’s eyes, mouth or nose. Cats can catch this virus by sharing litter boxes, food and water dishes with an infected cat, as well as by mutual grooming. An infected pregnant cat might also pass the virus on to kittens who are still in the womb. Because the virus is highly contagious, it is common in catteries, shelters and multi-cat households.

Some cats who become infected with feline herpes are latent carriers. Even though they will never display symptoms, they can still pass the virus on to other cats. Stress can cause these carriers to “shed” the virus, exhibiting mild symptoms, which clear up on their own after a few days.

Edited by author Sun Apr 29, '12 5:39pm PST

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Miss Mittens- - Angel DG #14

Angel Diva
 
 
Purred: Mon Apr 30, '12 6:57am PST 
Flossie, I've read that it's estimated that 90% of cats may have the feline herpes virus in their bodies but it remains latent and most cats never have flare ups or show symptoms. I'm not sure contact with other cats at a groomers would affect other cats unless they're already susceptible like you are.

Chronic stress (e.g. living in a shelter or crowded living conditions) and/or living with a chronic illness often cause flare ups. I had never shown any symptoms of herpes until I was 13 and had been living with cancer and undergoing chemo and then had surgery. After surgery, I had a flare up with conjunctivitis in both eyes. It took about 2 months but Terramycin and L-lysine helped clear up the conjunctivitis and keep it under control. My sister Kaci and I shared litterboxes, beds, etc. and lived in close daily contact with each other but she never caught it.

little angel
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Flossie!

40% fur 60%- attitude
 
 
Purred: Wed May 2, '12 7:05pm PST 
Thanks everybody for the information! Flossie is definitely a virus shedder, she has a flat little face, and getting her herpes under control is still a work in progress. I decided to forego the groomers just to be safe, I did talk to my wonderful vet though, and she has agreed to shave her mats (she has been seeing Flossie since before I rescued her and is pretty fond of the little nut). This makes me feel alot safer, since they know for sure how to keep things sterile and safe for the other kitties!
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Flossie!

40% fur 60%- attitude
 
 
Purred: Sat Nov 10, '12 1:40am PST 
Hi All,

Thanks to those of you who posted! Herpes is super contagious to other kitties, and as such I was as honest as possible with the groomers I contacted.

It was so impossible for me to find a groomer who would help that I conned my vet into giving her a buzz cut under the impedus that her level of discomfort was decreasing her quality of life. It was expensive, and they said there was no option but to give her a lion cut even though the mats were all around her front legs.

Many vets might not do this unless you argue with them about the increase in stress that having mats may place on the kitty (thus increasing the frequency and severity of corneal ulcers), but once I got her buzzed (in a safe environment where I know that they are going to sterilize EVERYTHING, and am sure no other kitty cats are going to get sick)she was more happy, spunky and rambunctious than I had seen her in months. It's really sad to have such a nice kitty who plays for a minute or two then falls over because she is so sore frown.

I know that the responsability falls on me as a pet owner to keep her fur intact, but when I comb that one part of her chest she cries, claws, bites like her life depends on it- or like it's a game smile. To put it frankly, I am a good pet owner, who is very used to long haired cats, put into a bad position by my lovely kitten's quirks.

To anyone who finds this thread, the answer is YES, TELL YOUR GROOMER, and if you can't find a competent groomer TELL YOUR VET. You may end up with a little extra expense in the long run, but at least you will be able to sleep at night knowing you didn't make other people's treasured pets sick. I am wondering now if better education for groomers might be a good idea.
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Jack

1198637
 
 
Purred: Sat Nov 10, '12 7:54am PST 
Our vet is awesome and will shave kitties if they need it. It may not be a beautiful job like a groomer would do, but it gets the job done! I have long orange fur and it gets matted on the underside sometimes. The vet takes care of me though. smile
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Church

I'm a model!
 
 
Purred: Fri Nov 16, '12 10:01pm PST 
Also wanted to add that a trip to the groomers could cause extra stress which could cause a flare-up... Another thing to consider.
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