Anna and Mike Cordelli
Norwalk, CT, USA

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Mulligan, Cadillac, and Elvis

Click here for Saffari Kitty

Mugsie and Caddy and Elvis came to us from Paws, The Pet Animal Welfare Society here in Norwalk. Please visit their page by clicking on the blue hyperlink above, they do some very good work.

In any case, we started off by fostering Mugsey, the orange cat in the pictures.

He was FIV positive, but because people have these strange fears, nobody wanted to adopt this kind and gentle bucket of fur. He weighed in at just over five pounds when we got him, he was very thin, About a week later they got Caddie in, another FIV positive cat, and we started watching her too. Mulligan has since tested negative for FIV on several repeat tests. A year or so later we were fostering Elvis, another FIV positive cat, and we ended up adopting him too.

It was impossible to have these three in your house and even consider giving them up again, so we adopted them ourselves. Not the brightest animals on the planet but still great pets.

Of course, with Halloween just around the corner they have to get into the act.

Mugsie wanted to go as Raggedy Andy this year.

So what is this FIV stuff all about? Well the cats have tested positive for the FIV virus. The F in FIV stands for Feline, the H in HIV stands for Human, so the FIV and HIV virus are related, but that doesn't mean you can catch anything from these animals, you can't. They are more susceptible to infections as their immune system isn't 100 percent, but they could also live very happy and long lives. Neither of these three are showing any signs of any disease for quite a long timeand without the test results you would never know they were positive. If you are looking for a cat then don't ignore FIV positive ones just because they are FIV positive. (By the way, Mugsie later tested negative for the virus on a routine visit with the vet about a year after we got him).  FIV cats have to either be only cats or in a house with other FIV cats so they don't pass the virus along.

Caddy, who is much more difficult to take pictures of then Mulligan is wanted to be a witch this year. She is so pissed about this posing for pictures stuff.

When spring of 2000 started rolling around, Mulligan was up to 11 and one half pounds. He's not overweight, he's filled out and is very healthy. Caddie, who was the shyest cat on the planet, has turned into the sweetest cat, often climbing up on you to cuddle and purr.

  Caddie is also quite small at under six pounds. Elvis on the other hand weighed close to the two others put together.

How do the three of them get along? Well, the last cat we had (visit the home page from the link above) loved a window hammock. With all the deals the online pet stores are running we got another one and both of them are quite happy with it. They play sometimes, but for the most part they are best of friends. 

Of course, Mulligan isn't happy when she makes him wear this hat.

As of this writing the first two cats have been with us for over four years now and have been no additional problems because of their FIV status. Any visits to the vet are exactly the same as you would expect, once a year for shots, every couple of years for dental work (though Caddie only has one tooth left after her last visit), and maybe once more for antibiotics for a cold or something. Nothing more then was usual for a cat that didn't have FIV. The point is, don't overlook FIV cats when you are looking for a cat if you don't have any other cats in your house. Our experience has been that they are no different then any other cat.  

Evlis was with us for two wonderful years, with problems at all, then the disease got the best of him.  He passed away in November, 2002.  Elvis was impossibly shy when we got him.  It took well over a year, but he became incredibly affectionate. When we first got him on a foster basis (visit the PAWS page at the link above for fostering information) we didn't see him for weeks. He never came out from under the bed when we were home. It took many hours of forcing him out of hiding and petting him to get him use to people, and now he spends all of his time with us, either at the other end of the couch if we are watching TV, or at the end of the bed.

Mulligan and Elvis have took to discovering the catnip in the window box. we planted it inside because outside it was drawing too many of the neighborhood cats who would get into these very loud fights at all hours of the night over it.

 

Caddie rarely has her eyes all the way open, always little devilish slits.

Elvis is the black and white cat at the bottom of the cat tree. And no, they usually are not all in the tree, Caddie will often be way up on top, Mugsie will sometimes get in it, Elvis has to be put there.

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