Charity rescues and quarantines abandoned kittens with calicivirus

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03 September 2020
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Whilst coronavirus is clearly still the main concern on everyone's minds right now; for cats, another illness beginning with "c" can lead to treatment and quarantine not dissimilar to COVID-19.

Like many animal welfare organisations, Mayhew have sadly seen an increase of stray, lost and abandoned pets being reported throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

With fewer organisations able to trap, neuter and return stray and feral cats and fewer members of the public able to get out and care for animals on the streets, more and more cats and dogs are finding themselves in need of help every day.

Hughes and Brodeur are two seven-month-old kittens who likely would not have survived had Mayhew’s Animal Welfare Officers and Vets not stepped in to save them earlier this month (August 2020).

Both kittens were found in a communal garden by a local resident, who noticed that they were lying down next to each other and not moving. They were extremely lethargic and seemed to have no energy, and were not tempted by the offer of food or water.

Luckily, the resident was aware of Mayhew and so gently coaxed the brothers into a box, before driving them in to the charity.

When they arrived, both Hughes and Brodeur were in bad shape. They had visible mouth ulcers, as well as sore-looking patches around their faces. Brodeur was clearly suffering the most and also had a very poorly looking eye, which was half closed.

The kittens were taken straight into Theatre, where Vets suspected that both kittens were suffering from calicivirus - a respiratory infection, which would explain the ulcers and general lethargy. They prescribed pain relief and antibiotics to Brodeur, with Hughes only requiring pain relief, before settling them both down in isolation in our Isolation Unit to recover.

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Thankfully, neither of them seemed to be significantly dehydrated, but the Mayhew staff made sure they had plenty of fluids and provided some warm and comforting food for them to enjoy.

Although they were clearly quite unwell, Hughes and Brodeur were both sweet and affectionate with each other and our team.

After a couple of weeks in Mayhew’s care, both kittens’ health had improved significantly - their ulcers healed and they began to behave more normally and get some of their energy back. However, as calicivirus can take up to 60 days to be eliminated from a cats system, they will have to stay in isolation for the duration of this period to ensure they do not infect any other animals or become unwell themselves again.

When their quarantine is over, they will be able to vaccinate, neuter and microchip both kittens, before placing them up for adoption and helping them to find their forever home.

If you are interested in giving Hughes and Brodeur a new home when the time is right, please keep an eye on Mayhew’s Rehoming pages, where their profiles will be uploaded when they are available.

Please note, Mayhew are not able to take any adoption enquiries about any animals in advance of them being listed online, and cannot reserve an animal for anyone before the animal appears on the website.