Shempi's story (warning, very frustrating)

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.

Shempi, RIP

Purred: Fri May 17, '13 9:43am PST 
Shempi is not my cat, but I'm posting for his owners to get advice.

Shempi was initially my boyfriend's sister's kitten--when she moved away and went back to college she ended up leaving him with her parents to continue his care.

Her dad is a bit old fashioned and 'country' about his beliefs in cat care, so poor kitten got the boot outdoors.

He was never neutered, and was under a lot of attacks from the other male tomcats in the area from the time he was only 4 months old. He's suffered and healed on his own from several cysts and the like by this point.

Well, this time, an injury wouldn't heal. A big, gaping hole on the top of his head. His owner tried to fix it with alcohol and peroxide every day (OW! eek) and it was still open and beginning to smell foul several months later.

Meanwhile he's full of worms, poor kitty, his bed was covered in, euch, dried tapeworms, and some other kind of worm I don't recognize off the top of my head.

Finally after some long and frustrating arguing, they took him to the vet.... Where he was then diagnosed as FIV positive. shrug Surprise, surprise.

Anyway, other than...well, all this, he's a surprisingly sturdy and healthy cat. No wonder, he's had to survive a lot on his own, I guess. They have other indoor cats so he can't stay there anymore, so we are in charge of finding him a new home. We might see if his old owner can take him now that she's moving again, but only if she promises to keep him indoors.

The vet ended up neutering him, 'refreshing' the wound and suturing it(they said usually they wouldn't suture such an old wound, but in his case he might never heal properly with FIV if they didn't) and dewormed him and got him back on his feet.

I guess I'd like some advice for what to do to keep this FIV, sweet sweet precious kitty healthy. I'm looking at posts mentioning inferon or something, I'll look into that.

I already have lysine powder for my kitten, is that something else that could help this guy?

Thanks for any and all comments and advice.


Somewhere there- is love for- everyone
Purred: Sun May 19, '13 6:42am PST 
Well, for one thing, if he is FIV+ he should never be allowed outdoors unsupervised to spread the virus to other cats. And, anyone who adopts him needs to be notified of his status so that they don't unknowingly mix him in with their FIV negative cats.

As far as his care, he needs a very good diet, I personally would say grain free canned and it certainly can't hurt to give him lysine every day, omega 3's and 6's, etc.. He should live in a stress free environment too.

I've been reading that you don't really need to give FIV+ cats medication every day if they are asymptomatic. You just need to keep an eye on their health carefully and if they get ill with anything, bring them to the vet right away as they might have a very hard time dealing with bacteria and viruses without intervention.

There are tons of sites on the internet about FIV but check out these:

h ttp://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cat-care/cat-care-feline-immunodeficien cy-virus.aspx

Best of luck,


I may meow to- you if you're- worthy
Purred: Sun May 19, '13 6:50am PST 
Wow poor little mite should have been removed from their care long ago. That is just my opinion. I am glad you were able to get him the vet care he deserved. Reach out to some no-kill shelters that have FIV areas for kitties, if they can't see if they may know somewhere you can contact. Look for TNR groups, they may know - ask some vets. Some shelters do not take them. I know in Chicago, there is a place called Treehouse that specifically takes these kitties in. My point is that it doesn't hurt to call wherever you can. If you are able to keep him safe for a while, just keep him seperate from your kitty. Lysine is very good for boosting the immune system, and he needs that right now. They can live long lives with FIV but should not be outside. Bless you for stepping in to help him. I wish you so much luck. hug

Shempi, RIP

Purred: Mon May 20, '13 9:58am PST 
Thanks for the advice, guys.

Yeah, I'm terribly upset about what happened. If he had been allowed to stay indoors or at least was neutered to make him less aggressive...confused But now is a little late to worry about what ifs I guess.

Finding an owner may be tricky since kitten season is in full bloom here in Texas. But we'll try. He's such a sweet boy. He just needs an indoor home with NO CATS.