dmarley: Fingerpainting (Default)
[personal profile] dmarley
It's that time of year again, when feline hormones are thick in the air and Tom gets the crap beat out of him. Since this is the second year this has happened, I've come to the conclusion that if he's going to come inside, it should be before anything more serious than a post-fight ear infection happens to him.

Unfortunately, something more serious has already happened. I talked the coming-in issue over with the vet and had Tom tested for feline leukemia and FIV (the feline version of HIV). He was positive for FIV, which is serious, but actually much better than being positive for feline leukemia. For one thing, there's a vaccine. For another, FIV is much harder to transmit to other cats. It also doesn't cross to humans.* If I get Greebo vaccinated, it should be okay to bring Tom in and see how they get on.

(*I had this discussion with several people today, who heard "Feline AIDS" and were shocked that I was bringing him in my house. One woman even said "Sorry, but I wouldn't bring my child on a play date to your house." I honestly had no idea how to respond, because simply saying over and over "Humans can't get it" based on, you know, that silly science stuff apparently wasn't good enough to overcome the "Ooh, scary AIDS" brand name.)

The good news is that Tom doesn't have any signs of feline AIDS. His immune system seemed to fight off the infection from the fight really well, and he doesn't have any other symptoms. The vet seems to think he has every shot of living a normal cat lifespan, especially if we bring him inside. He also has a good disposition, and the vet was really impressed with how friendly and docile he was pre- and post-op, which bodes well with him settling in with Greebo. This isn't really news to me, since I was already aware that he was a great big marshmallow. :)

Of course, it's all going to come down to how Greebo likes it. Greebo's getting on in years, and as much as I like Tom, if Greebo is miserable I'll have to find somewhere else for Tom to go. But I have reason to be hopeful. And in any case, it's going to be six more weeks before they can be in the same room, because that's how long Greebo's vaccination will take. Plenty of time to second guess myself. :)
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September 2012

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