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Sphynx with Feline Herpes and L-Lysine


Staff member
Jan 13, 2009
Lysine can also be used for colds or to reduce cold symptoms like sneezing, runny nose and runny eyes in sphynx, not just herpes. See the dosage below. Always see your vet before e diagnosing or medicating your pet.

Feline herpes
- is one of the most common respiratory diseases in cats. Since the ailment is viral, common used antibiotics are not effective against Feline herpes in Sphynx cats. There is one amazing supplement that has proven to be extremely effective in reducing the length and severity of feline herpes outbreaks and that would be L-lysine. Available without a prescription, it can help Sphynx cats fight the feline herpes virus.
What is Feline Herpes?-Also known as "feline viral rhinotracheitis", feline herpes (FVR) is an upper respiratory disease of cats caused by the feline herpesvirus type 1 or FHV-1.
Feline herpesvirus is the most common cause of upper respiratory disease in cats, it is more common in kittens, cats in stressed/overcrowded environments such as catteries, animal shelters & multi cat households. Kittens & older cats are more at risk than healthy adults, and are also at greater risk of dying. Once your cat becomes infected with the feline herpesvirus it will have it for life.

What are the symptoms-
  • Labored breathing
  • Excessive drooling
  • Frequent sneezing
  • Ocular (eye) & nasal discharge-greenish or yellow
  • Conjunctivitis which sometimes lead to corneal ulcers
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Depression
  • Ulceration of the mouth & tongue.
  • Pneumonia

Contagious-Yes- While the Virus is active and live, the cat should be quarantined immediately, do not share food or water bowels, bedding or litter boxes. Owners handling the infected cat should wash hands every time handling the sick animal.

How to diagnose Feline Herpes-Your vet will diagnose this disease based on the signs and symptoms that your cat is displaying. The inflammation of the eyes along with respiratory symptoms is usually diagnostic of feline herpesvirus. She may perform in-house tests for diseases with similar symptoms to rule them out.

Immunofluorescence - This is a technique used to illuminate either viruses or their antibodies in a tissue or culture using a fluorescent dye. Proteins labeled with a chemical specific to this disease will be used to detect the antibodies. They will appear under a microscope as a bright green spot on the slide.

PCR Test - This "polymerase chain reaction" test is a very specific and sensitive DNA test that can be used to look for an agent in an animals DNA. Your veterinarian will obtain a swab of your cat's throat and send it to a lab to test for the virus. This test may also be used to see if your cat has the chronic form of calicivirus and is shedding the virus after the symptoms have gone away.
Because many cats are carriers of herpesvirus, a positive test result for herpesvirus does not always indicate the cause of the respiratory infection.

Treatment of Feline herpes-Unfortunately there is no cure for Feline Herpes, once a cat is infected it has the virus for life. The goal is to give supportive care, treat the symptoms & try to shorten the outbreak. Treatment also depends on severity & symptoms.

  • Keeping the nostrils & eyes clear of discharges.
  • Antibiotics to treat secondary infections.
  • Antiviral drugs.
  • Ensuring the cat is receiving food & liquid intake. Force feeding, IV fluids or sub cutaneous fluids if necessary.
  • L-Lysine is an essential amino acid which has been shown to suppress viral replication and inhibit cytopathogenicity.
  • However, you should always speak to your veterinarian before you supplement your cat's diet.
What Is L-Lysine you ask?
L-lysine is an antiviral medication that helps control and treat the feline herpes virus in your Sphynx cat. L-lysine displaces arginine, an amino acid that is necessary for the feline herpes virus to replicate.

What Does L-Lysine Do?
L-lysine reduces the symptoms of a herpes flare-up.
L-lysine has been shown to reduce the symptoms of feline herpes, including conjunctivitis, corneal ulcers and congestion. Regular use of L-lysine also reduces viral shedding and mitigates viral flare-ups in cats.

L-Lysine Products
L-lysine can be administered to cats in a various forms, the most common of which is Viralys powder, which can be sprinkled over food. It is also available as Viral gel, Enisyl-F lysine gel and Enisyl-F lysine treats.

Many Sphynx cat owners use Lysine treats or powder the food to boost their Sphynx immune systems. Most people use about 250 mg -500 mg sprinkled over food, 250 mg being the most common for a "maintenance" type dose and 500 mg if your kitty has symptoms of a cold or herpes flare up (see your vet for proper dosage).

So the bottom line is that L-Lysine in any form is not a cure for Feline Herpes Virus but it can be an effective medication for this disease in Sphynx cats.

See your vet for proper dosage and treatment of this disease.

Sphynx Cat Community

Disclaimer: I am not a vet. See your vet for proper dosage and recommendations.
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