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Evaluating Novel Treatments for Shelter Cats with Upper Respiratory Disease

Upper respiratory tract disease (URTD) is expensive to treat and is a leading cause of euthanasia of cats in shelters. Feline herpesvirus 1 and feline calicivirus are the most common causes of URTD. Vaccines for these viruses lessen illness when the cats are exposed but do not block infection, which means exposed cats are infected for life and are susceptible to disease flare ups. This study will test three novel treatment strategies on shelter cats that are suspected to have long-term viral URTD but fail to respond to conventional therapies. Previous studies indicate that each new treatment has the potential to lead to new standardized therapies.

Dr. Michael R. Lappin, Colorado State University

Co-sponsors: Neil and Sylvia Van Sloun, the Van Sloun Foundation; The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® (ASPCA®); The Lauretta Boyd Charitable Trust