A guide to Standard Test for Cats

Before your cat leaves the shelter, we run a number of tests to rule out some common diseases / infections.

FIV/FeLV, Giardia, FCov (antigen and antibody), and for kittens Triple Test (FPV, FCov and Giardia)


  • Feline Immunodeficiency Virus
  • Viral infection which causes a weakened immune system
  • FIV cats can have as long a life expectancy as non FIV positive cats
  • However, can be more prone to common diseases – respiratory problems, skin problems, mouth inflammation & certain tumours.
  • Spread through bodily fluids, (blood) so FIV positive cats should be indoor only and single cat households.
  • It is not transmissible to humans
  • A small sample of blood is drawn

If a second line appears, then this indicates a positive for either FIV or FeLV.


  • Feline Leukaemia Virus
  • Commonly causes anemia or lymphoma & suppresses the immune system
  • Spread via saliva, blood, and to a lesser extent urine and faeces
  • Resistance seems to increase with age, so kittens and younger cats are more likely to contract it. Cats can eliminate the virus
  • FeLV positive should be indoor only, single cats


  • An intestinal infection caused by a small parasite. Clinical signs may be diarrhea.
  • Giardia cysts may be present in water or the ground.
  • Treatment is metronidazole antibiotics for between 3 – 10 days depending on severity.

A small sample of faeces is tested. A second line would indicate a positive result

FCov – antigen (Ag) & antibodies (Ab)

  • Feline Coronavirus
  • Viral infection
  • Can cause mild dihorrea
  • Most cats eliminate the virus, however some cats develop a persistent infection
  • Virus can be spread in cat faeces. Multi cat households are more likely to spread infection
  • FCov is not dangerous, but it can mutate, particularly at times of stress, to become FIP (Feline Infectious Peritonitis) for which there is no test, and no treatment.
  • Treatment is to boost the immune system with supplements.
  • A positive result for FCov antibodies and a negative result for FCov antigen means the cat no longer has FCov, but has recovered and now has antibodies. However, they could get it again.
  • If the FCov antigen and antibodies tests are both negative, then the cat has never had FCov

Triple Test – FPV, FCov, Giardia

  • Generally used for kittens
  • Feline Parovirus also known as (Feline Infectious Enteritis) & (Feline Panleukopenia)
  • A resilient virus that can survive in the environment for long periods of time
  • Mostly spread by a contaminated environment or infected cat faeces. Particularly in multi cat households / catteries
  • Can be fatal, so a cat who tests positive is unlikely to travel

FCov (Ag)

  • Testing for the presence of Feline Corona virus at time of test, not antibodies


  • Please see above


Please consult your vet prior to adopting from us should you have any concerns, or need further clarification regarding these tests. ????