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Search is launched in Dubai to find owner of HIV cat.

A cat suffering from the animal version of HIV is going to be put down unless a home can be found for him.

The vet who is caring for the cat said the feline can live a "normal life" if someone is prepared to look after him.

The cat, with Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), was found by Swedish expat Elizabeth Palmquist, who often feeds street cats outside of her workplace in Al Wasl. FIV is similar to HIV and causes a disease in cats similar to AIDS.

The physiotherapist said she noticed the cat was in pain and took him to the Energetic Panacea Veterinary clinic on Wednesday, where she found out that the cat has the condition.

Palmquist said: "Even though the cat has FIV, I was told the cat can still live up to 10 years if he is looked after and stays inside a home. He also needs to get his teeth removed becA[degrees]ause of a gum infection but I can pay for that if someone is willing to adopt him. It would cost Dhs2,500. He's a very sweet cat. I already have cats so I can't adopt him but he really needs a home or else they will have to put him down."

Dr Venia Lazaridou, who examined the cat, said whoever adopts the him would have to be someone who does not already own any pets because FIV can spread.

She said that he would only need a check-up every six months for a cell count. Lazaridou said: "It's important that the cat stays indoors. It has a chance to live a normal life. It could live for one year, five years or even 10 years.

"He doesn't necessarily need medication. Cats do get FIV but it's not treated similarly to how HIV in humans is treated."

If you are interested in adopting the cat, please email sarwat@7days.ae

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Publication:7 Days (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)
Date:Mar 6, 2016
Words:331
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