FeLV+ Cats

The Nine Lives Foundation is a no kill shelter. We therefore have a number of different types of Special Needs cats, including kittens and cats that test positive for the feline leukemia virus (FeLV). These kittens and cats are very sweet and friendly, and make wonderful pets. However, their immune system is compromised and they are therefore more susceptible to illness. Feline leukemia is a disease that only affects cats, and cannot be cannot be transmitted to people or any other animals. Kittens may get the disease in utero or drinking an infected mother’s milk. Older cats may get FeLV by grooming and fighting with an infected cat via saliva, blood, and possibly urine and feces. Therefore, an FeLV positive cat should not be in a household with other cats and be kept indoors to prevent infecting indoor-outdoor cats.


Kittens and cats that test positive for the FeLV virus are initially very healthy and may remain so for many months or years. In fact, we have several very healthy FeLV positive cats at the shelter that are 4 to 5 years old, including Albus and Zhang. We also have some terrific kittens such as Sid, Tribble and Daphne. Some kittens and cats may not tolerate the virus as well and live only a few years. However, although their life span may be shorter, we want their time to be as happy as possible in a home environment.  


We are therefore looking for permanent foster homes for our healthy FeLV kittens and cats. We invite you to come visit and play with these super-friendly and sweet animals that are housed in a separate room at our Adoption Center on Rolison Road, Redwood City. If you can give a home to these wonderful kittens and cats, they would be considered as “fostered” rather than adopted. This means that the Nine Lives will cover veterinary medical problems at the Nine Lives Clinic for the life-time of the cat to allow for a healthy FeLV positive cat. FeLV cats must go in pairs for companionship. PLEASE GIVE US A HOME.



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