New adopted Kitten has Pneumonia

by Deanna

Reader Question: We adopted a 4 1/2-month-old kitten from our local shelter. We also already have a healthy 10 year Old cat at home. The kitten has been restricted to a separate room until he is completely over his URI/pneumonia as diagnosed from our vet.

The shelter originally downplayed his symptoms.He is on an antibiotic and is sneezing, occasionally blood. The shelter was putting Gentamicin sulfate in his nose. We stopped that. He was also given the fvcrp vaccine the day he came to the shelter-if he already had any of those viruses associated with the vaccine, does the vaccine do anything?

My biggest concern is for the health of my other cat. Can she get sick from him even after his symptoms have cleared? She was adopted by us at 1 yr. Of age, but never sick while with us.she has had all her vaccinations.

Answer From Our Veterinarian

Hi Deanna,

I am sorry to hear of your new kitten’s health problems. The good news is that your older, fully-vaccinated cat should not be at much risk of getting sick as long as you keep the two cats isolated from each other, practice good hygiene when moving between the two cats, and thoroughly clean the room your new cat is in once his symptoms have completely resolved.

Whether or not the vaccine your kitten received at the shelter was fully effective depends on its timing with regards to when he became sick and which viruses and/or bacteria are responsible for his upper respiratory infection and pneumonia.

The details really depend on your kitten’s exact diagnosis, so it would be best to discuss your concerns with your veterinarian.


Jennifer Coates, DVM

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