Hello! My name is Samhain, and I am 2 years old. I am also a Parvovirus survivor!
When Samhain was only 10 days old, he got separated from his mother in a rainstorm. Cold and alone, he lay in a puddle and cried for help. Even though his mom was gone, his cries did not go unheard. On that fall night, Samhain was rescued, scooped up from the puddle by warm hands. It didn’t take long before we realized Samhain was struggling. He was dehydrated and starving, as well as frozen from the rain. We immediately started him on kitten formula and slowly tried to bring him back to life. Despite Samhain being malnourished, his appetite continued to decrease. When his condition began to worsen, we brought him to the vet. The vet returned with a grave look after running a few tests. She told us that Samhain had Feline Panleukopenia, also known as Feline Parvovirus, a disease that can kill within 24 hours. He had less than a 5% chance of surviving as a two-week-old kitten. The vet told us to make Samhain comfortable because he would die that night. We begged the doctor for treatment but learned that Parvovirus has no cure. The hospital gave him an IV of saline and sent us home.
That night, we lay in bed and watched Samhain’s tiny chest slowly rise and fall. Suddenly, it stopped. With all of my heart, I prayed that if Samhain could live, I would do everything in my power to stop the spread of Parvovirus.
Then his eyes opened.
Over the next few weeks, Samhain received intensive care to battle his disease. He was put on a rigorous antibiotic schedule, received saline IVs twice a day, and was on a strict diet to maintain his blood sugar and keep him alive. His recovery had its ups and downs. He suffered from seizures and secondary complications. The doctor offered to euthanize him at a certain point, but we decided to keep fighting. Finally, after weeks of emergency treatment and supervision, the doctor told us we were out of the woods. Samhain had survived Parvovirus!
I started Students Against Parvo as an initiative to combat the high levels of Parvovirus in Arizona. Feline parvovirus can be found anywhere. It is spread between cats as well as derived from the environment, as it can remain infectious for quite some time on objects as well as flooring, dirt, and many other surfaces. It is a widespread killer of unvaccinated kittens in particular. Parvovirus has no cure, but the FVRCP vaccine protects kittens from contracting it. Today, the FVRCP vaccine is the best preventative treatment for Parvovirus. Fearless Kitty Rescue is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that works to rescue and find homes for Arizona cats of all ages. They are a no-kill facility and provide every cat with the FVRCP vaccine. Students Against Parvo aims to provide funding to shelters around the valley working to fight Parvovirus.
Donating to Students Against Parvo will provide Fearless Kitty Rescue with funds to buy enough FVRCP vaccines to care for the ever-growing population of Arizona’s kittens.