Positive Cat Policy

It is not the policy of Steel Valley Spay Neuter Clinic to euthanize every positive animal.

However, there are many variable to take into consideration, including the positive test, visible signs of serious illness, the long term ability of the owner to care for the cat, quality of life for the cat and the promise of the owner to confine the cat to their house so as not to spread these deadly diseases.

We have a Positive Cat Continuance Agreement clients must complete for us to proceed with surgery.

My cat _____________________, owned by ______________________________
Tested positive today for Feline Leukemia Feline Immunodeficiency Virus Both (circle one)

  1. I understand both of these diseases can be fatal, and there is NO cure for them.
  2. I understand these diseases are spread by direct contact usually via bite wounds or mutual grooming, bodily secretions, and fluids, including blood, mother’s milk, urine, feces and in very high quantities in saliva and nasal secretions.
  3. I understand my cat is a source of these diseases to other cats because it is infected with the virus.
  4. I understand there will be an additional fee of $ 40.00 to continue the surgical altercation of my cat, due to the extra care, disinfections procedures and protocols we must exercise to protect other patients at SVSNC that day.
  5. I understand in the best interest of both my pets and other neighborhood cats, it best to keep my cat confined to my house.

I have read and agree to confine my cat strictly to my house

The owner and a SVSNC sign off on this agreement.

Here at SVSNC, we require ALL cats be tested for Feline Leukemia and FIV that present for surgery.

This is done in the best interest of ALL cats at the clinic that day. We take every precaution necessary in handling our patients and preventing exposure to potentially fatal infectious diseases.

We only accept records from a currently licensed veterinarian for cats previously tested. Tests must be completed within 60 days of presentation and/or be fully vaccinated for FeLV combo.

THERE IS AN ADDITIONAL $ 40.00 to do surgery on POSITIVE CATS. They will be done last in line for the day and housed in isolation. We have to do additional disinfection of facility, staff and surgical area. We do not wish to contaminate nor infect anyone else pet cat at the clinic that day. We take as many precautions as we can in handling positive animals. We DO NOT declaw positive cats!

We do offer euthanasia and disposal service for positive cats for a modest fee.

ALL of our TNR colonies euthanize positive cats to stop the spread of these deadly diseases, protect the health and well being of a colony and minimize risk to pet owner’s cats.

If you decide to proceed with your positive cat it is very highly unlikely that the TNR or other organization will pay for any portion of your bill for services that day. You will be 100% responsible to pay and sign the positive cat continuance policy.

We do not set policy for other organizations but this has been our experience with all the great TNR organizations we work with. You should contact the TNR or spay neuter sponsor organization you are working with and ask their policy PRIOR to your arrival.

About FIV and FeLV

Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) and feline leukemia virus (FeLV) infections are major causes of death in cats.

How the Viruses Spread

Both viruses are spread contagiously from cat to cat, and surveys show that up to 15 percent of sick cats are infected with the viruses. But even healthy cats may harbor infection and spread viruses to other cats. In some cats, signs of disease may not become apparent until weeks, months or even years after they first become infected with FIV or FeLV.

FIV is typically spread when one cat bites another; rarely does an infected mother infect her kittens.

FeLV is spread when the saliva or urine of an infected cat comes in contact with another cat. This can happen when cats groom each other, or when they share food and water bowls or litter boxes.

What the Viruses Do

FIV and FeLV affect cats in similar ways, primarily by interfering with the immune system’s ability to ward off infections. Bacteria, viruses, protozoa and fungi found in the everyday environment—where they usually don’t affect healthy cats—can cause severe illness in FIV- and FeLV-infected cats. Various kinds of cancer and blood diseases are also much more common in cats infected with either virus.

Signs of Possible Infection

Early signs of infection are often subtle and commonly seen in cats that are simply not feeling well. These signs include:

  • Decreased appetite
  • Decreased grooming
  • Decreased energy

As infection becomes more advanced, you may see the following signs:

  • Marked loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Weakness
  • Pale gums
  • Mouth sores
  • Diarrhea
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Abscesses

We strongly recommend that you speak with your veterinarian about having your cat tested, as your cat may be at risk for FIV and/or FeLV infection. Record these signs and bring it to your veterinarian to aid in your discussion.

Humans Are Not at Risk

Research to date has shown that FIV and FeLV only affect cats.

For More Information

The Cornell Feline Health Center offers in-depth online information on both FIV and FeLV.