Part 2 of “So you want to be a cat breeder” – “just one litter”22 June, 2010
“Hello, I want to buy a kitten from you and I want to have just one litter from her …” [sadly typical request from potential kitten buyer]
Maybe you love kittens and have always wanted a litter of kittens. Or maybe you grew up in a household where the female cats had kittens. So now you want a litter of kittens. You could, of course get a litter of kittens from a moggy. But what if you wanted a litter of kittens from a pedigree cat? All you have to do is buy a pedigree cat and breed from her, right?
I had a potential kitten owner visit one year. She fell in love with one of the male kittens. And therein lay her dilemma: you see, she wanted her children to experience the magic of seeing kittens being born. Because of that she wanted to have just one litter of kittens and of course she couldn’t do it with a boy.
I told her that I wasn’t able to sell her a kitten that was certified for breeding (also known as being on the active register). That’s because breeders are very fussy about who gets into the breeder’s club.
It sounds exclusive, but it makes sense.
Reputable cat breeders want people who are committed to breeding healthy cats which conform to the breed standard. We want to make sure that breeders maintain high standards. We want to trust the people we sell breeding cats to. And we also have a responsibility to mentor the person we sell to whom we sell a breeding cat. It’s a network built on word-of-mouth and personal relationships.
I asked the kitten owner how she would get a stud for the cat. And she told me that she would just let the cat run around the neighbourhood and let the local tom have his wicked way with her.
I counted to ten and pointed out that there was a very strong possibility that the local tom might have some fatal cat disease that he would pass onto the queen.
What about using a pedigree stud cat? She asked.
Again, without an introduction from an established breeder, it is difficult for a first-timer to get a stud cat’s services. And without a stud cat who’s certified with the cat registry and a queen who’s on the active register, the kittens cannot be registered as pedigree kittens.
But does having a pedigree really matter?