Can I transfer the feline herpes virus from one cat to another via carrier?

I transfered a cat to the local Animal Shelter, and I have found out that he has the herpes virus. Do I need to disinfect the cat carrier that I took him in? (I am a cat sitter and use this carrier to transport other cats). Also, if I held the cat, can the virus transfer from my clothing to another cat at a later time?

  • Vetinfo

    By: Erin Broersma El Segundo, CA

    Replied on 04/19/2011

    It is definitely possible that the carrier can pass the virus on to another cat. Your clothes are much less likely to transfer the virus, although I would make a habit of not wearing the same outfit while handling cats of different homes. The cat carrier should be disinfected every time you take a cat out of it. At veterinary clinics, cages are decontaminated each time a patient leaves or is moved. Using a product that is labeled to kill viruses such as feline herpes, leukemia, and so forth would be recommended. Bleach works well, but products such as D-128, or Neutroquat, are labeled for this specifically. As a cat sitter, it will have to be important that you use scrub shirts or changes of clothes to make sure you are not holding cats while wearing the same outfit and that the carrier and vehicle is clean and disinfected every time you take a cat out of it.

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