Feline Leukemia FAQs

FELINE LEUKEMIA TEST @ HOME is a convenient, accurate, and easy to do AT HOME test. Less stress for you and your cat since there is no trip and no blood testing. Saliva/tears have been used for 30+ years by veterinarians and physicians. We use the same ELISA test used by all veterinarians to diagnose disease. We are a veterinary laboratory. We provide huge savings of 50%.
 How does it work?
Everything is included. Blot a tear or saliva on our special paper (you just need a drop) and mail it to us. We perform the test and mail you confidential written results. Highly accurate results from a veterinary laboratory. SAVE 50% OR MORE! Optional Certificates and rush results available.
1.SIMPLE TO DO-just moisten a swab in the cat's mouth, then send to our veterinary lab.
2.CONVENIENT - No trips to your veterinarian, and no damage to the car or pet owner.

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 Is This Test Accurate?
Research shows that the saliva/tear testing is within 99% sensitivity compared to blood.
    Nearly 100% Accuracy on Feline Leukemia negative cases.
    94-96% accurate on positive cases. These tests are screening tests. If positive you must retest in 7 - 42 days. If the test is negative in an adult retest in 6-12 months. If your cat continues to demonstrate positive results make an appointment with your veterinarian.

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 How accurate is the saliva test?

The ELISA Saliva/Tear Test has been available through our lab for 16 years. Numerous research studies prove this test to be highly accurate on negative cats with a greater than 99% correlation with the blood test. Best yet, the saliva test have a high percent correlation with the IFA (the ultimate FELV test, but a test that costs $99 - $180 at most veterinary hospitals). All FELV tests have inaccuracies, however veterinary research indicates saliva/tear FELVtests have a spefcificity of 97.1% vs.plasma specificity of 99.9%, which means you get the same results as you would from a vet.
  Evaluation of a Saliva Test Kit for Feline Leukemia Virus Antigen
An enzyme-linked immonosorbet assay (ELISA) test kit for the detection of feline leukemia virus (FeLV) antigen in saliva was evaluated in 150 cats. Saliva and blood samples from all cats were tested for FeLV using the saliva ELSIDA kit and a plasma ELISA kit, respectively. These results were compared with indirect immunofluoresent antibody (IFA) testing of blood smears also obtained from each cat. The proportion of cats that tested positive were 10%, 7%, and 8% for each test, respectively. Using the IFA test as the gold standard, the saliva FeLV test had a sensitivity of 91.7% and specificity of 97.1%, while the plasma ELISA test had a sensitivity of 91.7% and specificity of 100%.
J Am Anim Hosp Assoc 1996:32:397-400

Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV) is a contagious retrovirus that is spread horizontally via saliva from  infected cats. Disease induced by this virus is among the leading cause of death among pet cats. Numerous testing strategies have been developed, due to the implications of FeLV infection, that  involve detection of group-specific antigens. Whether or not a particular test is effective for a given cat depends on the stage of infection within the animal. The pathogenesis of FeLV involves infection and replication of the virus in the oronasal lymphoid tissue. Infected lymphocytes then enter the peripheral circulation, producing viremia. This viremic stage is transient in many cats: 86% of adults and 20% of kitten eliminate the virus at this point. Infection is established in the bone marrow, infected neutrophils and platelets enter the circulation and bone marrow, infected neutrophils and platelets enter the circulation and produce a persistent viremia. The cat ultimately will shed the virus after systemic epithelial tissues, such as the salivary glands, become infected. Antigen testing using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) or indirect immunofluorescent antibody (IFA) evaluation has proven effective in detecting viremic cats. Blood is the most frequently used source of antigen. However neither ELISA nor IFA testing on blood products can differentiate between transient and persistent viremia. The collection of blood also can be cumbersome, time consuming, and stressful to the patient. Recently, the use of saliva as an antigen source for screening tests has been evaluated. Only cats with persistent viremias (and thus established infections) shed high concentrations of the virus in their saliva; therefore, these tests should be superior to blood tests for detecting chronic infections. Other benefits of using saliva include ease of sample collection and reduction of sample-induced stress to the patient. The purpose of this study was to evaluate a commercially available saliva test kit as a diagnostic test for FeLV.
  Sheryl D. Babyak, DVM
M.G. Grooves, DVM, MPH, PhD
Donna S. Dimski, DVM, MIS
Diplomate ACVIM
Joseph Taboada, DVM, MS
Diplomate ACVIM

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 How do I save 50%?
CAT OWNERS SAVE 50% or more since they avoid the $40-65 cost of an office fee plus they save $10-20 on the test. All cat owners know they should test and want to test but most don't because of the trip. We provide the convenience and savings needed to allow all cat owners a chance to test their cat.
Now You Can Spend Less AND Do More!!
These Are The Average Savings For One Cat In A Household:
  


 Vet Fees

 Our Price

 Savings

 Office Call

$40 - $65

0

$40 - $65

Leukemia Test

$42 - $69

$29

$13 - $40

 Fecal Worm Test

$24- $32

$20

$4 - $12

 Pet Health Test

$37- $49

$34

$3 - $15

Total/Year

$164 - $228

$84

$70 - $179

 

Test all your pets with all 3 tests and still spend 1/2 to 1/3 of what you used to spend for a much healthier pet!!

 
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 Who should test?
All cat owners whether their cat is outside or inside. A 2008 AVMA study demonstrated that 2% of inside cats and 10-13% of all cats get FELV which they ultimately die from. Another 10-12% of cats have FIV- so test for both.
Test cats with dental or gum disease and cats with any recurring disease.

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 When should I test?
1) As soon as you get an older cat or kitten.
2) As soon as you notice your cat is ill (use our Pet Health Checkup to rule out or check for the 12 most common organ diseases, and our fecal test to rule out worms).
3) 3-6 weeks after exposure to a sick cat or one with FeLV.
4) Once a year if not vaccinated and once every 1-2 years if vaccinated for FeLV.
5) Every 1-6 months if postitive for FeLV.

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 Is FIV Testing Available?
Yes. We charge an additional $12.00 to test for FIV from the same sample, however we need 2-3 drops of blood for the FIV Tests.

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 WHY USE THE SALIVA TEST FOR FELINE LEUKEMIA DIAGNOSIS?
Diagnostic tests can detect all three forms of feline leukemia virus but can't distinguish between them. Blood Elisa FELV tests detect antigens to FELV but does not indicate whether the virus has epithelial tissues. This could take 1-2 months following exposure and would indicate persistent infection.
Comparison of the accuracy of saliva/tear samples with serum/plasma samples for detecting feline leukemia virus in cats.Several studies have been done to compare the use of serum/plasma samples with tear/saliva samples for detecting FELV in cats via the ELISA methodology. The results are as follows:
"The overall accuracy of tears and saliva as compared with serum and plasma samples is 95.0% and 97.5 respectively." University of Georgia Veterinary Diagnostic and Investigational Laboratory. College of Veterinary Medicine, Tifton, GA 31293 "The overall accuracy of the saliva ELISA reactive to the serum ELISA was 97.9%." "Specificity of the saliva test (99.2%) based on serum ELISA, the simplicity of the test procedure, and the speed of the results support its use as a screening procedure. "Clinicalpractices. "Mark G. Lewis, "Saliva as a Source of Feline Leukemia virus Antigen for Diagnosis of Disease."Journal of Clinical Microbiology Results from 95.5% of the samples concordant...""If all cats in one hosehold test saliva negative, the presence of FELV in the cattery is not very likely." "Based on the saliva and serum results for cats living in 92 multi-cat household, it was concluded that saliva may be a useful secretion for FELV screening. "Hans Lutz and Oswald Jarrett, "Detection of Feline Leukemia Virus Infection in Saliva."Journal of Clinical Microbology.

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 Advantages to using Feline Leukemia Test @ Home Kit

    IN HOME TESTING - collect the sample at home; mail to our veterinary lab-we perform the same ELISA test you would get at any veterinarian.
    HUGE SAVINGS-studies show test fees range from $42.00 to 73.00/cat. Our fee is much less. In addition, you don't have to pay an exam fee of $40.00 - 65.00.
    HIGHLY RELIABLE TEST by our Veterinary Lab for assured accuracy. Veterinarians use the same Elisa test.
    HIGHLY ACCURATE -Saliva Elisa tests have a high correlation of negative results to serum Elisa tests, nearly 100%. (College of Vet. Med. Study)
    Saliva Elisa test indicates that the virus has invaded the tissues of your cat-chronic infection. (Blood does not).
    Saliva Elisa positive tests indicates that a cat is shedding the virus.(Blood does not specifically indicate this).
    THE RESULTS MAY BE MORE ACCURATE THAN BLOOD TESTS depending on the stage of FeLV. (*Johnson - AVMA). More importantly, a positive result indicates the actual presence of the virus in the cat's tissues and bone marrow, rather than a passive exposure. It also indicates those cats that are shedding the virus!!!
    ASSURED WRITTEN RESULTS and their interpretation by e-mail, fax, or mail.
    FAST RESULTS -tests are performed the day of receipt. Results are sent the following business day.
    EASY TO DO. NON-INVASIVE - collect a drop of saliva.
    NO PAIN - NO STRESS - avoid the trip to the vet's office. This test avoids all of the problems inherent with blood.
VOLUME USERS/BREEDERS - use on all your kittens to reassure the new owner of your professionalism, then sell to your clients. Extra income - sell these to other breeders/pet stores. Pre-test new cats before allowing them into your cattery. Easily and affordably test your litters. Catteries can sell the kits for retesting in 3-12 months.
A reminder: NO FELV test is 100% accurate. The saliva test has an excellent correlation on negative cats (nearly 100% correlation. Blood and saliva tests have more than 95% specificity (positives). Inaccuracies do occur on nearly all Elisa tests, which is why any positive cat should be re-tested. These are screening tests.
The definitive test is an IFA that costs $99-180.00 plus an office visit fee. BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, UNLIKE BLOOD TESTS, YOU WILL YOU KNOW IF YOUR CAT HAS FELV AND IS SHEDDING THE VIRUS.

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 What is Feline Leukemia and how common is it?
Feline Leukemia (FELV) is an extremely common disease of cats which effects up to 13% of all cats. It is fatal unless detected early. Treatments and vaccines are now available, increasing the need for testing.

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 Why should my cat be tested?
1. FELV is fatal. Death occurs within months or up to 4 years later. Cats with FELV endure many other diseases before they die since FELV (like AIDS) lowers their resistance.
2. Clinical signs of FELV can be treated. Treatment can lead to remission if you detect the virus soon enough. No guarantee of results, though.
3. Out test indicates if your cat is contagious and shedding the virus. (Blood tests don't).
4. Our test can indicate whether your cat actually has FELV rather than a passive exposure. (Blood tests don't.) Our test can indicate if the virus has invaded the tissues or bone marrow.
5. Our test allows your cat to stay home; you collect the sample and mail it to our lab.

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 Why should I use this test?
    All the pet owner does is collect the sample at home, then mail the sample to our Vet. Lab.
    Our Lab produces the same reliable test results that any veterinarian produces, but the pet owners save a trip and money.
    We are the oldest lab doing this test.
    Veterinarians use our products.
    We provide rapid reliable results (tests are within 24 hrs of receipt). Results are emailed, faxed or mailed for the fastest return possible.
    Pet owners avoid the office call, which saves them at least $35-50.

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 My cat is already vaccinated, should I use this test?

Everyone who has a sick cat should test it for FELV; 1 out of every 3 cats with any illness has FELV. Breeders can test every kitten before sale. Every vaccinated cat should be tested periodically (every 1-3 years) since the vaccine is only 50 - 91% effective. More and more cat owners are testing yearly instead of vaccinating.
If you or your friend's cat has FELV, you should test all of your cats.

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 My cat is never outside; does it need to be tested?
Yes! Few cats are truly inside, most occasionally get outside. All cats are exposed to outside elements when doors/windows are open. Indoor cats have less immunity and when exposed are more likely to get FELV or develop a more serious and debilitating clinical disease. In addition their ability to recover is less, so test your cats now.

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