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By Alice Wolf, DVM, DipACVIM, ABVP (Fe)
Small Animal Medicine, Texas A&M University

Dr. Alice Wolf, a veterinarian board-certified in internal medicine and a professor of medicine at the Texas A&M University School of Veterinary Medicine, shares the latest information about the biology, behavior and methods to help avoid Feline Infectious Peritonitis.

An overview on Feline Infectious Peritonitis, including clinical presentation, transmission, diagnosis, prevention, testing for the disease, and treatment options.
Feline coronavirus disease is a subject of considerable controversy and confusion. Feline enteric coronaviruses usually cause only mild, self-limiting diarrheic illness in young cats. More virulent, invasive strains of feline coronavirus produce the clinical disease syndrome called feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) and these virulent isolates are known as feline infectious peritonitis viruses (FIPV).
Dr. Fred W. Scott, of the Cornell Feline Health Center, has conducted three experiments to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the new intranasal FIP vaccine, Primucell-FIP, currently being marketed by SmithKline Beecham Animal Health (SBAH, formerly Norden Laboratories).
Hematologic findings are nonspecific and variable depending on the severity and progression of FIP and other concurrent problems. A neutrophilic leukocytosis and mild, normocytic, normochromic anemia are present in many cats. Severe anemia may be found in cats with concurrent FeLV infection.10 Lymphopenia (< 1500/Ál) is another common finding.
Experimental studies show that FIPV is found in the tonsils and small intestinal mucosa within 24 hours of ingestion. Viral infection of the cecum, colon, mesenteric lymph nodes, and liver occurs over the next 14 days. Further systemic spread to any body organ or system occurs as the disease progresses.
A listing of the references cited in the Feline Infectious Peritonitis Series by Dr. Alice Wolf.
FCoV is shed in the secretions and excretions of infected cats. Feces and oropharyngeal secretions are the most likely sources of infectious virus because large quantities of FCoV are shed from these sites early in the course of infection, usually before clinical signs of FIP appear. Infection is acquired from acutely infected cats by the fecal-oral, oral-oral, or oral-nasal route.

About the author(s)
Alice Wolf DVM, DACVIM, DABVP(Feline)

Dr. Wolf earned her DVM at U.C. Davis in 1976, and is currently a professor of Small Animal Medicine at Texas A&M University. She is married to Dr. James H. Johnson, Diplomate AAZV, and lists as her her "surrogate children" her 15 Peruvian Paso horses, one little red mule (Cincinnati Red), one Timneh Grey African Parrot (Benny Benin), 3 dogs (German shepherd (Cheyenne), Border terrier (Kasey), and Labrador retriever (Sombra).

She also enjoys horseback riding in general, sidesaddle riding in particular, gardening, bird and wildlife watching, and cooking. Her favorite quote:

"Life is uncertain, eat dessert first."

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