Are some cats more susceptible than others?

Yes, some cats are more likely to become actively infected than others. Because feline leukemia spreads through intimate contact, cats living in multicat households have the highest risk of contracting the disease. Those who spend part or all of their time outdoors also are at high risk, because the more time a cat is outside, the more chances it has of contacting an infected animal.

Age also affects cats' vulnerability. Kittens are less able to fight FeLV because their immune systems are not fully developed. Cats more than 10 year old also are more susceptible because their immune systems are weaker. Owners of high-risk cats should be careful to protect their pets. Cats not in the high-risk group are still susceptible to FeLV, however, and also need protection.

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