Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) is a disease caused by the mutation of Feline Coronavirus (FCoV) in cats. FCoV is a type of virus that can spread through the saliva, feces, and urine of infected cats. It can also be transmitted to other cats through contact with environments contaminated by the virus. However, FCoV is not fatal and does not cause significant sickness to the infected cat. When FCoV mutates into FIP, it becomes very fatal to the infected cats.
The symptoms of FIP in cats vary depending on the form of FIP the cat is experiencing. There are two forms of FIP :
If not treated early, both forms of FIP can progress into:
Some common symptoms of FIP in cats include:
Loss of appetite
Drastic weight loss
Difficulty in breathing
Fluid buildup in the abdomen (Wet FIP)
In certain conditions, late FIP treatment can lead to other symptoms, such as neurological symptoms (neurological FIP) or eye problems (ocular FIP).
At present, the diagnosis of FIP in cats can be done by observing for FIP symptoms and through laboratory tests to detect the presence of FIP virus in cats. Currently, the most effective treatment for FIP in cats is using the antiviral drug GS-441524. This FIP medication has shown a high efficacy in clinical studies, with an efficacy rate of above 87%. Treatment with GS-441524 can be given via subcutaneous injection and/or oral route.
FIP is a very complicated and deadly disease in cats. However, with the right and timely FIP treatment, the disease can be treated with a high chance of full recovery. It is important for cat owners to understand the symptoms and risks of this disease, and work with their veterinarian to ensure their cats are given the proper and best treatment for FIP.