American Association of Feline Practitioners

Veterinary professionals passionate about the care of cats

Feline Retrovirus Management

2020 AAFP Feline Retrovirus Management

Download - 2020 Feline Retrovirus Guidelines
Download - Client Brochure


The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) released updated Feline Retrovirus Testing and Management Guidelines to the veterinary community, which are published in the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery. In publishing these Guidelines, the AAFP aims to provide the most current information about feline retrovirus infections to veterinary practitioners so they may optimize the care and management of their feline patients. In addition, the Client Brochure provides cat caregivers with information regarding transmission, testing, prevalence, and precautions. These Guidelines focus on feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) infections, which are found in cats worldwide. The spread of these viruses can be minimized through education, testing, and vaccinations.

The updated Guidelines represent a consensus of current information compiled by an international panel of researchers and practitioners, and is an update of the AAFP's heavily referenced 2008 Retrovirus Testing and Management Guidelines.

"The 2020 Feline Retrovirus Testing and Management Guidelines contain much new information about feline leukemia and feline immunodeficiency virus infections. The Guidelines were written by an international panel of experts and included not only retrovirus researchers, but veterinarians working in private practice and in shelters. We hope these Guidelines will be of practical use for all veterinarians. The panel is especially proud to have endorsement of the Guidelines by the International Society of Feline Medicine," said Retrovirus Guidelines Co-Chair Susan Little, DVM, DABVP (Feline).

Julie Levy, DVM, PhD, DACVIM, DABVP (Shelter Medicine) added, "These guidelines address rapidly evolving knowledge about how testing results, clinical expression, and prognosis for FeLV may change over time relative to the cat's current immune response and resulting levels of virus in circulation, how quantitative testing may be used to better inform clinical decision-making, and an emerging trend in which screening for FeLV and FIV is increasingly shifting from animal shelters, where cats are adopted, to veterinary practices, where animals receive comprehensive care."

Download - 2008 Feline Retrovirus Guidelines
Download - 2008 Feline Retrovirus Summary Document