Finding a good cat breeder is not that easy. In our previous article we told you about places you could go for a good kitten. In this article we are going to reveal some of things to look after when you meet a cat breeder and get to choose a kitten.
Remember, this is not only about getting purebred cats. Similarly, it applies to a house where owners accidentally got kittens or to backyard breeders. It does not mean they are all bad, but just like with everything, there are better, and worse breeders.
Things to look for in a good cat breeder
Few of the points may be also applied to shelters streets and other places where you go for a kitten.
Visit the breeder at home – here’s a basic rule. If you ask the breeder to visit the kittens at home, and he refuses, chances, he’s not a good breeder, are high. In many cases, you may hear several excuses, like recently made shots, no need to bother the queen or the kittens and more. However, this is a bulls**t. Good breeders always welcome future cat owners. They, first, have nothing to hide, second it gives them an ability to show how good kittens are cared for, what socialization opportunities are granted to them, how clean and harmless the environment is, and how healthy all the other pets in the house are.
Check the overall health of the kitten – check his head, eyes, ears, nose, coat, tummy for any abnormalities (we will write more about this in the future of our first cat owner series). First, it of course, lets you know if the kitten is unhealthy. Second, even if it’s nothing serious, like fleas or ear mites, that are easy to treat, it gives you some information about the breeders responsibility.
See how passionate the breeder is – encourage the breeder talking about the specific cat breed. For example, you may tell you have little or no experience about the breed (even if it’s not true), and you want to know more about it’s personality, looks and origins. Trust us, good breeders, those who are in cat breeding business for passion, will talk a lot. They love this breed, it’s their passion, they know everything about it. Of course, there are still shy people, which does not disqualify them as bad breeders, but we hope you got the point.
Avoid the breeder if he’s insisting too much – here’s a story: once we were looking for a kitten and visited a litter at home. When we decided it’s not the right choice for us, the breeder became insisting, and even lowered the price. When we got too tired of it, we told we’re going to leave and will think about it. On that, we received an insult, that we should think fast because there are others who’d take that kitten. We replied: “So, there are no worries for you”. In reality, if he has no worries about kitten being taken, why he’s so insisting? Good breeders do not worry about you taking the kitten or not. He’s struggling to find the best home for kittens, so he may examine YOU a lot. He may even ask you to fill a blank with many questions before deciding whether you get a kitten. Don’t feel insulted by this, you may be getting a kitten out of very caring hands.
Visit several breeders – we know, when our heart tells it wants a kitten, it wants it fast. Hold down your hormones and focus on your homework. Try to find several, like three or four, breeders in your area, and visit them all. First, it gives you a possibility to compare. You’ll then see that all kittens are cute, but when you place two litters side by side, it’s easier to spot the difference. Second, it gives you no pressure. You can visit litters with an open mind, with no need to buy instantly. Visit few, come home, clear your head and make the decision.
Also, it’s always good to trust your common sense, and even your inner voice. Above points are fine, but we can’t mention every case. Drop back if something is suspicious, like breeder refusing to give vaccination record, a contract of purchase or a pedigree record. Especially, if he’s giving a dull excuse why his not granting something he promised before. There are always other breeders to visit.
Please read our next article in the series in which we talk about the earliest age when the kitten can leave it’s mother. Remember, if a breeder is offering you kitten who are still too young, most likely, he’s not a good breed, too.
This article is a part of series about getting your first cat.