A dangerous and highly contagious virus has been detected at a veterinary clinic in Zurich. The clinic has decided to accept no more cats for the next two weeks.
Fortunately the virus is not transmittable to humans or other animals species.
This highly rare form of the feline calicivirus kills around 60% of cats that catch it, according to Zurich University. In recent years the virus has infected veterinary clinics in the US and other European countries.
Symptoms include fever, lethargy, running eyes and nose, mouth ulcers, swelling of paws and face and yellowing. Cat owners with infected cats should contact the animal section of the University of Zurich. They have set up a hotline. The telephone number is 044 635 91 29 and operates from Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 17:00. The clinic is quarantining cats and accepting no more feline or canine patients, and will announce the end of the quarantine on its website.
So far 12 cats have been diagnosed with the infection, with another 7 suspected of having it. Four cats have died.
Unfortunately there is no cure. Vets can only treat symptoms.
The university is still trying to establish where the virus came form.