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"Hobby" breeders

(14 Posts)
ghislaine Mon 27-Feb-17 22:23:21

I hope this isn't a touchy subject (it probably is...). We are moving and for the first time in years will have a home suitable for a cat. I would love to have a Tonkinese and have been looking at rehoming and breeders' sites. This is my first foray into the world of pedigree cats. I keep seeing references to being a 'hooby breeder". What exactly does this mean? Should I steer clear? I don't want to be involved in a feline puppy mill type scenario!

cozietoesie Mon 27-Feb-17 22:56:34

Someone who genuinely breeds cats as a 'hobby' wouldn't bother me. I'd regard that almost as a positive in fact - they're likely to care more about the breed/their cats and eg have higher standards than someone who is only keeping animals to make ££££. (And sadly, there are some of those around.)

I might be a little concerned though at such a declaration being made deliberately and early on, rather than you finding out through eg chatting to them. It seems - I don't know - just a little forced?

Have you been to the breed website? smile

cozietoesie Mon 27-Feb-17 23:00:35

PS - I should add the caveat, though, that it's been a while since .I had to search websites for a breeder so I don't know just what they're advised to put on them these days.

GardenGeek Mon 27-Feb-17 23:55:09

The litter tray party line is you must get a kitten/cat from a rescue centre; and certainly never off gumtree.

But I have a slightly different opinion; mainly formed because I love my cat which I got from Gumtree grin

I got him from a home breeder. He's so beautiful & perfectly representative of his breed cross that any professional breeder would have used him for their breeding stock, or as a show cat.

I always liked that I got him from a lively home environment with young children, cats and dogs; and he has proved very adaptable due to this. He moved from mine and his flat, into a 4 dog/ 2 cat (now 3) household aged one without blinking an eyelid.

In comparison to the DP's other 2 cats who were bought rescued IMO from a professional show breeder who had them stacked in cages round her house - he's a lot more human orientated, confident, less anxious, never bites if moved or handled. DP's poor pedigree cats hid in their house for 2 years before they dared to interact with anyone. It was only when one got stuck up a tree and DP saved him that he earned the trust of 1, and the other slowly learned from the other. But they are still very tetchy anxious beings.

Also because we got our boy as a kitten we were able to teach him to like car rides, go on a lead, loves visiting multiple homes - for holidays or taking him for weekends away.

If you do go hobby breeder/ home breeder, then make sure the kittens are correct age to leave, you see them with their mum, and visit more than once before buying, that its a genuine home and obviously where kitten was raised - ie. our kitty knew exactly where the dogs lived and flew straight out the door to try to visit them over baby gate.

Toddlerteaplease Tue 28-Feb-17 09:15:31

I suppose you just have to be very careful and do your research. My pair were breeeding queens who lived in poor conditions. Out of a group of six rescued. 1 died and one was very sick and almost died.. They'd never lived In a house and it took them a long time to settle in. I bet the breeder who must have made a mint with their kittens showed them off as family pets.

Kiroro Tue 28-Feb-17 09:19:39

I would say a hobby breeder is someone who has a few queens and only has a few litters a year, the queens are more like pets and the kittens are well socialized in the house.

Hobby breeder to me is probably a good thing than a full on commercial breeder who has multiple litters at any one time and the kittens aren't around people/pets/household noises.

ghislaine Tue 28-Feb-17 19:43:39

Thanks all - I haven't been looking on gumtree but through the links provided on the 2 breed websites. They are mostly names like "Tonkydoo Tonks" and "Tonkarella" (I've made these up). It definitely sounds like Kiroro's description, I just wasn't sure if it were code for something else!

cozietoesie Tue 28-Feb-17 20:01:44

I'd get in touch and either have a chat or two or go see them. (Or both if distance permits.) There's no substitute for homework when you're looking for a companion who might be around for twenty years or so. smile

RubbishMantra Tue 28-Feb-17 20:30:41

Yes, definitely contact the breeder, ask to visit. I found my Devon Rex boy through googling GCCF breeders in my area. His breeder is a hobbyist, the queens are part of the household, and they paid for the services of a stud.

I have one happy little lad, who loves everything and everyone, and as his breeder described, "bomb-proof". He makes a very good companion to my quite neurotic moggy, and adores him. The main reason I chose his particular breed is because they're so affable.

I think the best advice is, really do your homework.

RubbishMantra Tue 28-Feb-17 20:34:57

*... forgot to say, if they're not with their mum, smelly, aren't socialised or anything that seems "off", let the RSPCA know. Those are the first signs of kitten farming.

Wolfiefan Tue 28-Feb-17 20:37:09

Is there a breed specific club or society? Try may keep a list of breeders. Get to cat shows and meet people and ask questions.

RubbishMantra Tue 28-Feb-17 20:40:36

*... pps, just realised, I was at boarding school with a girl called Ghislaine! Not you is it OP?!

Lf803 Tue 28-Feb-17 20:46:20

I'm a hobby breeder! Just do it purely because I love them. My gorgeous girl is due today and is certainly in no rush I've been waiting around watching her all day!
Defiantly visit homes because you get an instant idea of what their start in life has been.

One breeder I went to had a litter in each room of her house and after chatting to her for a while she confessed to having 18 females she was breeding!!! She was very dishonest and gave people false paper work so she didn't get caught out for over breeding them!

cedricsneer Tue 28-Feb-17 20:56:52

No advice on breeders (other than that ours is fab - in Scotland) but just to say we have a tonk and he is magic.

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