Purchasing a cat might seem to be as straight forward as going down to a local pet store to find a furry family member. However, because of the cruel living conditions found in the pet mills that provide animals to pet stores, it is becoming less popular to purchase cats and dogs from stores. Adoption is widely encouraged in the animal protection community, while buying from a cat breeder is another option that numerous pet-owners choose. Buying from a breeder is often frowned upon, since there are thousands of abandoned felines in need of good homes; and it is certainly the most expensive option. Breeders can sell cats for prices starting at several hundred dollars, into the tens of thousands depending on the rarity of the breed. However even though there are definite downsides to purchasing a cat from a breeder, there are still plenty of positive aspects. Below is a list of the benefits associated with purchasing a pure-bred cat.

  • When you buy a cat from a breeder, you are able to find the exact kind of cat you want, such as a Persian, a Bengal, or Siamese. These kinds of unique breeds rarely are found in animal shelters/rescues. There will be no mystery as to what kind of cat you are bringing home, since the breed verification paperwork will be provided to you. This is a benefit, since by selecting an exact breed, you can also be aware of the personality traits and tendencies that are typically associated with it. Mixed breeds and crossbreed cats are much more likely to have unpredictable behaviors.
  • You will get to see the home in which the kitty was raised, and potentially meet the mother and father of your pet. This will be a good indication for what traits and aspects of personality, or healthy issues and allergies may be evident later in your cat’s life.
  • Breeders offer guarantees. You can be confident that most breeders will be invested in the future of your cat should you run in to any difficulties, or if you are unable to keep him. They have devoted time and care to the pet’s welfare and comfort, and will be under contract with you to care for them further should the need ever arise.
  • The breeder will have not only medical records for your cat’s vaccinations, visits to the vet, tests results etc., but will usually also have the same documentation for both the cat’s parents.
  • The breeder will be knowledgeable about the specific needs of your cat breed, offering useful insights, and being a helpful point of reference/mentor for the future of your pet parenting.

How do you find a responsible cat breeder?

The best way to find a purebred cat breeder who handles the process responsibly, is to go to a cat show or reach out to a specific breed club for recommended breeders in your area. Once you have met with a breeder, you can also determine whether or not she is reliable, based on some of the below standards that most breeders adhere to.

  • A responsible breeder should never sell a cat younger than 12 weeks old, and will only breed 2 or 3 kinds of cats.
  • They should always provide vaccinations for all their cats, not just the kittens, and they should never send you away with a cat that has any symptoms of diseases. The cat should have received the vaccines for cat flu, enteritis, rabies, and feline leukemia, among others. While vaccination requirements can vary by state, it will be important to confirm with the breeder and a vet about what shots your cat will need in the future.
  • Though many breeders fail to do this, they should provide you proof that the mother and father of the cat have both been recently tested for medical issues, and were given a clean bill of health.
  • If they have not done so, the breeder should require/encourage you to spay or neuter the cat. They will also want to ensure that your cat will be an inside cat, for his own protection against disease and danger. Another consideration they may address is whether or not you plan to declaw your cat. Though this issue is contested, de-clawing a cat is largely considered unethical, as it is a painful process for felines.   A responsible breeder will strongly advise you not to allow your cat to be declawed.
  • They should also ask you a number of questions about how you intend to care for your new pet, including the environment, the time you plan to devote to training and playing with your cat, and any intention of buying other cats in the future. A good breeder will be concerns about finding his cat a stable and happy home.
  • Whatever method of purchasing you choose be sure that the breeder or adoption home provides sufficient health records, medical care, vaccinations, and documentation for your feline friend.