Diseases, Shelter and Rescue Resources, Vaccines

Cat Vaccine Abbreviations

What are the abbreviations for cat vaccines? Cat vaccines come in a variety of combinations and may be identified by abbreviations. Here’s a handy cat vaccination guide to help you determine which letters need to be in your cat vaccines.

“FVR”, “H”: Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis

This is a contagious disease of the respiratory tract that is caused by the Herpesvirus. Common symptoms include eye ulcers, congestion of the nose and sinuses, fever, and loss of appetite. Cats that are extremely dehydrated or anemic may die from this disease. Even if a cat survives, he will be a carrier of the disease for the rest of his life, so a vaccination for FVR is highly recommended.

“C”: Calicivirus

Another contagious respiratory disease, Calicivirus may be difficult to distinguish from other feline respiratory infections. In addition to other common eye and nasal symptoms, it can also cause ulcers of the mouth or joint and muscle pain. Severe cases may lead to death, especially in young kittens. An infected cat will be a carrier for the rest of his life and continually shed the virus for years.

“P”, “FPV”, “FP”: Feline Panleukopenia

Feline panleukopenia is a widespread disease is similar to canine distemper. Highly contagious, it invades developing cells and corrupts the white blood cells so the cat is unable to fight off infection. Symptoms are sudden and include fever, diarrhea, vomiting, seizures or death, especially in unvaccinated kittens. The only treatment is supportive therapy of the symptoms, so vaccination is important.

“Ch”: Chlamydia

Feline Chlamydia is the fourth component of 4-way vaccines, though it’s not always abbreviated. Often called “cat pink eye,” it causes a variety of upper respiratory symptoms such as sneezing, congestion and eye and nasal discharge. Cats living in multi-cat households are more susceptible to the disease, so vaccination is not always necessary for every cat. Talk with your veterinarian for recommendations.

“FeLV”, “LVK”, “Lv-K”: Feline Leukemia Virus

Feline Leukemia is caused by a virus that replicates in the cat’s body and attacks the immune system, causing cancers and other immunodeficiencies. Symptoms may include fever, lethargy, diarrhea, or loss of appetite, and eventually death. Feline leukemia vaccination is not necessary for every cat, so check with your veterinarian first.

“Bb”: Bordetella bronchiseptica

Bordetella bronchiseptica is a highly contagious respiratory disease that causes inflammation of the trachea and bronchi. Bordetella spreads through direct contact, through the air, and through contaminated objects. Transmission can occur between dogs and cats. Symptoms include coughing, retching, sneezing, and watery nasal discharge.


A cat 3 way vaccine (any vaccine with a 3 in the title) contains the Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus and Panleukopenia viruses.


A feline 4 way vaccine (any vaccine with a 4 in the title) contains the Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Panleukopenia and Chlamydia viruses.

When you’re ready to find the right vaccine for your cat, use the Revival Vaccine Finder to help choose the best vaccine products for your cat!
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If you need help with what vaccines do cats need, call us at 800.786.4751.

Written by: The Revival Education Team

If you need help, call us at 800.786.4751.