Poxvirus Infection In Cats: What Do You Need To Know About It?


The poxvirus infection in cats is actually due to a DNA virus, which come from the Poxviridae family of virus, particularly from the genus –Orthopoxvirus. This is a rather common transmitted or communicated virus, yet it might readily be disabled through different kinds of viral disinfectants. Cats of all genders, breeds, and ages are vulnerable to the poxvirus infection and both exotic and domestic cats may contract the poxvirus infection. Further, it is also important to remember, nonetheless, that this virus is limited geographically to Eurasia or the continents of Europe and Asia. In this article, we will discuss some more amazing facts about poxvirus infection in cats including its causes, symptoms, prognosis, and treatment. Read on to learn more!

What is Poxvirus Infection in Cats?

Poxvirus infection is actually a zoonotic malady. This just means that it may be transmitted in between species, including humans, dogs, and cats. It’s so important to get a vet help as soon as possible for this particular zoonotic illness, more especially if you have some other pets at home. If you’re anxious that you or your family members might have been infected by this virus, you should seek some medical attention promptly.

Moreover, poxvirus is also a virus in the genus Orthopoxvirus. This also include the cowpox, which is of the same condition, which might affect the cats. Also, poxvirus infection in cats commonly appears with skin lesions on different parts of the body, and might progress to general indications, specifically when secondary infection gets to develop in the skin cuts. This particular virus may infect any kind of cat, regardless of its age or breed, including both the exotic and the domestic ones.

Thus farm this feline condition is limited to the Eurasian countries or the countries in Europe and Asia. If you are living in a certain area where the poxvirus infection in cats is prevalent, you need to be careful for the signs of the infection in the cat, as well as to comply with the requirements for the transport of them to some other counties when important. Adopting, purchasing, as well as moving cats deliberately frequently needs to have them tested for any disease or illness.


Feline cowpox is the same virus as the poxvirus, which is transmitted the similar way. It may infect a lot of animals, not only cats. The name it has might suggest it’s the most typical condition in cattle, yet it’s actually rare with the bovine species. If the cat has contracted with this condition, which is rampant in Europe as well, the symptoms might include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • High body temperature
  • Pneumonia
  • Nasal discharge
  • Breathing issues
  • Skin ulceration


Rodents are actually the main carriers of the poxvirus, and may transmit the condition to cats via bites. Cats, which live outside and hunt in rodents are at higher risk of obtaining a bite and contracting the poxvirus infection i9n cats. If there are skin lesions developed, they commonly appear in the bitten area.


Some cats may show direct indications of infection, you need to remember that this isn’t always the case, the symptoms might take one to 2 weeks to start appearing. The skin lesions are the most typical symptoms of the poxvirus infection in cats. These lesions may appear circular and crusty, as well as might be found on the area like:

  • Mouth
  • Front legs
  • Head
  • Neck

Some other symptoms, which might appear include:

  • Conjunctivitis
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Pneumonia
  • Anorexia
  • Lethargy


A vet assessment commonly includes a thorough physical examination, as well as a discussion on the health history of the cat. Further, the vet might ask some questions regarding the exposure of the cat to some other animals, and the possible contact of it with rodents. Moreover, it’s also common for standard blood tests to be done, in order to rule out or identify the systemic conditions, which might cause the symptoms of the cat.

When the sores or lesions are existent, as is typical with the poxvirus, samples of scabs or tissue are commonly examined with the electron microscopy, in order to determine if there really is a poxvirus infection. Additionally, a skin biopsy might also be conducted, as well as some other laboratory tests and cultures, in order to rule out or identify the bacterial or fungal infections,

Treatment for Poxvirus Infection in Cats

There is actually no known direct treatment for the poxvirus in cats. The signs and symptoms of it might be treatable with antibiotics and fluid therapy might be recommended, in order to assist in keeping the cat from having secondary infections. The cat might be sent home as well with Elizabethan collar. This will help in preventing the cat from scratching or licking its wounds while they heal. Nonetheless, even though there is no direct treatment for poxvirus in cats, most cats that are infected with it may recover on their own after a month or two.


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