First of all let me sayI live in Covington, Louisana. The names except for my kitten’s name and breed have been changed as I have been told by my husband that you can not call out someone who does the stuff below by name legally even if what they are doing is not right. But I don’t want anyone else to get hurt the way I did. So please be careful and take heed of this cautionary tale.
Make sure everything is perfect before you buy a kitten. If your intuition starts trying to convince you somethings wrong then run, don’t walk to your nearest exit. I love my kitten but I sure wish I had listened when my intuition kicked in.
I love my Somali Kitten, but if I had to do it all over again I would have done a lot more research. Here’s why:
I went to the breeders site and saw the sire to my kitten before I decided to purchase one. He was magnificent and so I emailed her and she put me on her list to buy. I was so excited as anyone would be. My kitten was born on February 14, 2009. The breeder promised she would put pictures up on her website. I waited and waited and waited………I was going through some stressful times and I was also stressed that she wasn’t posting the pictures she promised and so my husband called her and begged her to send me one. She did and this is it:
As I am not a breeder, I did not notice the dark circles on the bridge of the nose. These are the beginning signs of ringworm. This is why her pictures were never posted on the site with any of the other kittens. Someone in the cat world would have noticed. I asked the breeder about this picture and others she took where the ringworm is evident and she told me she didn’t see anything. Here’s another: This one was sent again after much begging. Notice the dark spot next to the eye and the red spot in the ear. I know this is going to sound silly but I thought the spot by her eye was a beauty mark, silly me. The breeder was treating the ringworm but not being honest to me that my kitty was sick.
On the day I went to pick her up she was dirty and she smelled very bad. The breeder told me that she knew I would understand that she didn’t want to bathe her because she was stressed by her last set of shots at the vet’s office. I’m writing this so that if this happens to you at this point you will ask for your money back and walk out the door and never look back….Before you get attached to the kitten.
I also want to tell you that half way through the kittens time with the breeder I drove to visit her. Guys I wanted this kitten so bad that I overlooked so much. I feel so stupid now, but you don’t have to. This is why I’m telling you all of this. I didn’t know the spots on the kitten were ringworm. The breeder took a picture with my camera. She had the same exact camera sitting on her desk in the house. This is how the picture turned out:
I wonder why…Hmmmmmmm.
Back to the day I pick Nikki up. The breeder also told me that the kitten had soft diahrrea because she was stressed. She also did not have any of the other kittens present. I wish I would have pressed to see them. I didn’t know any better so I signed the contract and took her home. Before we took the trip home we followed the breeder to her office where she was housing all of the other kittens because my daughter wanted to see the ragdolls, a cat she thought might be a nice addition to her household. The conditions were dangerous to say the least, one of the ragdolls looked very sick and most of the mother cats looked very thin. My daughter did not purchase a ragdoll that day. Also, the other kittens in Nikki’s litter were not present at the office. When we questioned her about it, she told us that they where back home waiting to be delivered to their new owners.
I took my cat home and she either threw up or made this liquidy number two mess that was yellow and smelly. I decided it was because of the three hour trip home and decided to keep an eye on her. The next day I was feeding her and she vomited and choked and had a hard time breathing. I called the breeder and she told me that it was normal and she was just stressed. Well Nikki (my kitty’s name) seemed to do a little better for awhile and then she started going downhill rapidly until one morning when I took her out of her cage (I was keeping her seperate from my other two cats at first) she went limp in my arms. She was moments away from death. I took her to the vet and he put her on an iv and they searched for answers. I called the breeder and she could give me no info and acted so suprised. She tried to trouble shoot the problem and was just amazed that this was happening.
My vet at that point told me that this was a breeder problem and it was about now that I should be asking the breeder to replace the kitten.
When I told the breeder she informed me that none of the other kittens had gotten ill. She also said to keep her posted because she wanted to know in case she had to call the other kitten’s owners. I bought her concern hook, line and sinker. Just in time my vet made the diagnosis. He said she had a parasite called giardia. He put her on two antibiotics and we treat her and after many sleepless nights she began to get better. We put her on A/D and she gained a whole pound in one month. It wasn’t until later that the breeder told me that my kitten had come in contact with another Somali she had in her home that she was evaluating as a breeder. She said this cat’s diahrrea was whitish. She even had a dignosis although I can’t remember exactly what it was. I wish she had told me this while my kitten lay dying on the Vet’s table. Never once did she offer to pay vet bills or replace the cat, yet when I finally confronted her after having put up with enough of the lies and deceit she told me that she had made the offer and I had said no. Folks, I’m not crazy. I’m not going to put out 800 dollars for a cat and then turn down the breeders offer to pay the vet bills especially when the breeder sold me a sick kitten.
A couple of weeks later my family went on vacation to Orange Beach. I boarded the kitten with my vet because I was horrified at the prospect at her getting sick again. I called midweek to check on her and my doctor tells me she has ringworm. She had always had missing fur on her face but the doc and I both thought it was because of the sticky antibiotic i had given her. My 24 year old daughter who brought the kitten home with me also had ringworm on her shoulder and I contracted it as well. When I picked Nikki up from the vet, I smelled a familiar smell. Dip. This is why the breeder had not bathed her. I hadn’t been informed and I had bathed her during the first week that I got her, so viola, the ringworm was allowed to run rampant as its treatment had been terminated. I called the breeder and asked her if she had Nikki dipped and she told me no. She said that they were treated for fleas I want to say weeks before, but she told me out and out that Nikki had not been dipped at the last visit. And guess what? I believed her. I know, I know, but you have to understand I wanted so desperately to believe the breeder. The breeder had bragged on this kitten and said she was show quality and that if I wanted to show her she would be there for me. I bought in. But all you have to do is look at the pictures to see where it all started. When they say pictures speak a thousand words man they arent kidding. Those spots you see in the pictures the breeder took were now huge and when I got her back from the vet she had large chunks of hair that had fallen out all over her body. I didn’t take pictures because I didn’t want pictures of her like that, but my vet has everything in her charts. He called me a sap in the way that all vets do when they feel you’ve been taken advantage of and told me again that I should return her to the breeder, but I loved her and she was mine for better or worse.
But how did I make the breeder’s enemy list. Well, for one my cat got better and I took the breeder up on her offer to come to a show. She had told me that she had a policy to never enter a cat in the same event as a customer’s cat, but she did anyway which was good because it’s the only way to win points for you cat. In other words there were only two Somali kittens and one has to beat the other one in order to score points. There are 12 rounds and my kitten took 6. I was so excited. Saturday morning I had discussed the possibility of breeding my kitten when she was old enough which is apparently a faux paux. She hadn’t been spayed before hand per contract before the show as she was too small. Instead of just telling me no, she said she was open to it and even said that if she was to mate it would probably be with the kitten she was competing against. When I thank her for the show on Monday by email and tell her we are excited at the prospect of eventually breeding Nikki she sends me this:
“As for breeding Nikki that is another subject. I know you love her a great deal, and she was adopted as a pet. I gave you show alter rights, so you could bring her to the show and enjoy the fun and experience, which I am glad that you are having a great time. My average show / breeder cats that I have adopted in the past costed me $2,500 to $3,000 plus shipping and expenses. The adoption fee for show/breeders is very different than the cost of a pet. For instance, Janice that you met at the show adopted Jello Shot for $2,500. It would not be right for me to now change authority in TICA for breeding rights for one person under other terms. It is very expensive to adopt show/breeder cats and then to campaign them. This is why hobbyist don’t make money off of the kittens. Look through some of the sites to begin understanding. If you are serious about becoming a breeder, then you have a great deal to learn about genetics, dna, etc.. etc… and sleepless nights. You can call me one night to discuss what it is like to really be a breeder. I really had a great time with you and everyone this weekend. Thanks for your help showing Tujaques and I am proud of Nikki, The Breeder ”
Well, at that point the deceit had hit the forefront of my brain and I emailed her pretty much everything I just wrote here for you to read. It was not the fact that she was saying no to breeding. It was the fact that she had led me along by the nose the whole time. It was like somebody slapped me in the face and I was now wide awake.
So needless to say, she sent email after email one worse that the other calling me a liar and telling me that I had mental issues. She also would not stop emailing even after I asked her to because it was important for her to get the last word. And here it was:
“Mary, please let this email serve as notice to stop all contact with me. If you continue, I will consider it harassment and will take legal action. I don’t have time for your contradicting statements and falsehood. You or anyone else in your family are in no way allowed to email me, call me, send mail to me or any other type of contact. ” The Breeder
But as for having the last word, as Christina says in the last line of “Mommie Dearest,” Did She? Did She?
Update: There was a question as to whether I took her to the vet as you do when you bring home a new kitten and the answer is yes I did, the morning after I purchased her. At that time she was not perky or happy but she was not throwing up in the vet’s office. Structurally the vet called her a winner, but as she was not throwing up or having diahrrea in his office he was not able to diagnose her as such. I can’t say with accuracy if the spots were there on her face when he examined her, but we weren’t looking for ringworm as we weren’t informed that it was a possibility.
Also, I wanted to journal this because it puzzles me and I just wanted to write it down to keep record of it. At one time when I spoke to the breeder on the phone, she told me that her daughter had her eye on my kitten, so if she mentioned anything about switching kittens that I should just ignore it, that it wasn’t true. At the show when I told her daughter that I understood why she had liked my kitten so much, she didn’t have the first idea of what I was talking about. I’m not making anything of that because it has me totally confused, but I wanted to write it down because it kind of sent of warning signals when it happened…..