There’s More to Me Than FIV

For years, APA has been an advocate for cats and kittens of all types and special needs. One segment we’re most passionate about are the kitties positive for FIV. Buster, a gorgeous, affectionate tabby boy was one such kitty.

Found as a stray, Buster was in rough shape when he first came to us, scrawny and with paws so damaged they feared he had frostbite. After numerous vet visits and lots of TLC, he healed well and quickly became a favorite of volunteers and visitors alike. Despite his winning disposition and signature squeaky meow, Buster was passed over time and time again. He stayed with us for a few years before he found the family he was looking for, but when he did, it was the perfect fit!

Buster went to a home with six other kitties, only one of which was also positive for FIV. He acclimated very quickly and soon took the youngest in the household, a kitten named Bastian, to be his best friend. The two were frequently seen cuddling together for naps, bathing one another (Buster was determined Bastian would have the cleanest ears), and wrestling — they’d chase each other through the halls, pounce on one another and roll around for hours. For all their closeness and sharing, when Bastian had routine bloodwork run after more than a year together with Buster, he still tested negative for FIV — a bit of anecdotal evidence for how difficult it is to transmit FIV.

Unfortunately, Buster passed away in late 2019 from unrelated liver problems. The life he lived, though shorter than anyone wished, was filled with joy and his legacy of love and light is one that will never be forgotten. Kitties labeled with FIV are often overlooked and misunderstood. We hope you’ll take the time to research and educate yourself, to speak for these special guys, and to consider them the next time you’re looking to adopt.

FIV Resources:

https://resources.bestfriends.org/article/fiv-cats-faqs-feline-immunodeficiency-virus

https://www.catster.com/lifestyle/cat-health-vet-study-fiv-positive-cats-living-together