In the past, feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) infection, and also latent FeLV infection, were commonly associated with lymphoma and leukaemia. In this study, the prevalence of FeLV provirus in tumour tissue and bone marrow in FeLV antigen-negative cats with these tumours was assessed. Seventy-seven diseased cats were surveyed (61 antigen-negative, 16 antigen-positive). Blood, bone marrow, and tumour samples were investigated by two polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays detecting deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequences of the long terminal repeats (LTR) and the envelope (env) region of the FeLV genome. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) was performed in bone marrow and tumour tissue. None of the antigen-negative cats with lymphoma was detectably infected with latent FeLV. The prevalence of FeLV viraemia in cats with lymphoma was 20.8%. This suggests that causes other than FeLV play a role in tumourgenesis, and that latent FeLV infection is unlikely to be responsible for most feline lymphomas and leukaemias.