Test Errors

We provide test instructions, test kits, and review the lab results.  We encourage catteries to submit our notes to kitten buyers, (though not all catteries do).  

Large scale testing shows the majority of Siberians over 6 months old saliva test from 1.75 - 7.0 mcg.   The full scale for adult cats is 0.12 - 32.0 mcg.

Our tests measure the level of Fel d1 in the saliva.  Kittens below 16-20 weeks have unstable (or very low) levels.  The salivant and our test methods release Fel d1 from the cells into the saliva, usually allowing testing beginning at 12 weeks.  

We ask that catteries note reactions occurring during testing, and we correlate those notes with the test results. Variation can be caused by panic reactions or sample dilution.

We do see some errors in saliva tests, which is consistent with biological testing.  These errors show up in different ways.  The following indicate problems with testing. 

1. Dilution errors: Tests below 0.12 mcg

Sample dilution can be caused by excess salivant on the swabs, allowing kittens to drink water just prior to testing, use of drugs or sedating foods (high tryptophan diets), use of Purina LiveClear foods, bruising the upper cheek during testing, failure to fully swab the mouth prior to testing, or individual breed lines that mature more slowly. 

2.  Stratification: Litters with stratified results in the lowest range 

Results where there are distinct differences within the litter but all test Exceptionally Low - is a sign of immature kittens or dilution issues. We recommend the cattery tests at an older age, retest the litter, or sell the kittens at a level higher than the tests indicate.

3.  Low Results:
Multiple litters all testing below 0.1 mcg

Large scale testing of hundreds of Siberians show only 15% will test in the lowest two allergen ranges.  When all litters from a cattery test below 1.0 mcg, we are concerned with the possibility of dilution errors or immature kittens, and suggest the cattery perform future tests when kittens are older and more mature.  

4. High Variation: Individual kittens show wide test variations

Just as dilution causes errors on the low side, panic reactions cause abrupt release of Fel d1.  The maximum variation between samples should not exceed 3x.  We recommend deleting the lowest results or retesting the kitten when variations exceed 3x. 

Sample Report

Below we have attached a test from our own cattery (Lundberg Siberians) from an Exceptionally Low dam and Very Low sire.  You can see there are no severe dilution errors.  There is good stratification between levels, test results are stabile, and there is a single obvious panic reaction with Helina.  Our notes are typed into the right margin.

\© Meredith Lundberg 2005 - Lundberg Siberians