How to Choose a Good Cat Breeder
How To Choose a Good Cat Breeder
If you are looking to add a new kitty love into your home, you want to be sure that you are choosing a good breeder! There are many “backyard breeders” that often produce cats with health or temperament issues that you’ll want to avoid. A good breeder is someone that has a passion for cats and wants to better their breed. If you don’t know what to look for or ask your breeder, it can be difficult to tell which breeders you should support!
Thankfully, there are ways to separate good breeders from bad. Here are my 5 recommendations on the best way to choose the perfect breeder for your next best friend!
Where to Start Looking
Between social media, Craigslist, and Google, there are advertisements for cat breeders all over! Anyone can set up an ad, but not all of the breeders that you see with legitimate looking ads are good breeders. There are also plenty of scammers out there that will take your money and leave you with nothing but a blocked number!
Instead, try starting with the professional cat associations’ websites. The breeders listed on their pages are professionals and have paid to be a part of these important organizations, though you should still do individual research! I recommend checking out Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) and The International Cat Association (TICA).
Research Your Breed
If you are looking for a specific breed of kitten, be sure to do your research on the breed! Not only does it help inform your decision on what cat will work best for you, but it also helps you understand what medical conditions are common in the breed. For example, Sphynx cats are prone to heart issues.
A responsible breeder will screen all their parent kitties for these common health conditions and will only breed their cats if they are healthy and free of genetic issues.
Ask to See Their Contract
Before deciding on a breeder, you should ask to see an example of their kitten contract. You want to read through it to make sure that you agree to all their terms, but also to see what their health guarantees look like. Good breeders should offer a minimum of a one to yesr congenital health guarantee.
Ask for References
Advertisements and websites can be misleading; their online presence may be great but that doesn’t mean their kittens are! I recommend asking for references from former adopters – chances are, they will have some great advice on their interactions and history with the breeder. It's also good practice to check out reviews on Google, as they can provide lots of details on the experiences of other customers.
You can also ask for vet references from owners of cats that have come from their breeding program. Speaking to their vet can give you valuable insight into the cat’s general health and care needs.
Verify Legitimacy and Living Conditions
It's important to make sure the cats are in a safe and clean environment, so as part of your research process you should ask the breeder to give you a video tour of where the cats and kittens live. This will help verify that they are indeed who they say they are, as well as that their living conditions meet the expectations of a responsible breeder.
You can even have them write your name or the current date on a piece of paper and show it in the video so that you'll know it's from this day and not something edited or prerecorded. This also helps you verify that the person is legitimate, as there are many scammers that will list cats for sale with no intention of delivering on their promise, only taking your money!
A responsible breeder can be a great resource when you’re looking to add a new cat to your family. Doing your research beforehand can help you find the right breed for your lifestyle and learn about common health issues within that breed. Be sure to ask to see their contract and talk to previous adopters as references. With a little bit of research on your part, you can verify that the breeder is reputable and find the perfect feline friend for your home.
Keep giving your pets the best of natural life!
April Arguin A.S., C.P.N., M.P.H