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NEED ADVICE- FIP KITTEN SELLER

ellie4-12

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note: someone on this board has also bought a FIP kitten from the same breeder..


Now, After four days of no sleep.. I am no vet genius here..
But when I met my breeder her husband joked "yeah, we have about 15 cats in our house" which I assumed he was kidding about..

But after Harry comes down with FIP
I can't help but think..

15 kittens + FIP + sales = INJUSTICE SCAM

please read my story and let me know if there's anything I can do. According to the contract there is no way she is legally liable for FIP death.. but there must be some way of doing something. Bad business bureau? TICA?

please give any advice you have!



When I called her on the phone I said that Harry was acting a bit funny and that I've noticed his tummy has been getting swollen. She responded with.. '" Well.. does his diarrea really stink?" Yes, " Ellie, can you see his hip bones clearly? " .. Yes... " How big is his tummy? Does it feel inflated?" Yes..

" Ellie.. I have bad news for you. Harry has FIP. I know he has FIP because one of my kittens has already died and I have refunded them. And I know if I don't tell you, you will end up spending hundreds of dollars on vet bills and tests"

... A kitten from the litter died from FIP?! When were you going to tell me?

" I have sent out two emails today to those who have adopted the litter and I was going to send you an email tomorrow. I'm so sorry"

.. Well do you think you can refund me?

" That's funny that that's the first thing you think about.. Yes.. I can give you a refund"

That was about it for the phone conversation. I was crying too hard to really say anything else. We briefly spoke about how long he might live and i told her I would be updated her on the situation.

Well, after updating her on Harrys euthanization she responded with

Hello Elle, I'm so sorry for your loss. I hope time will help you heal. It is so very hard when something like this happens . He was the biggest of his litter. I don't understand. However I need something from your vet (with there phone number so I can contact them in case I have any questions) stating why Harry needed to be put to sleep. There are so many things out there it is hard to say if he had FIP, usually an autopsy is needed to determine this and FIP can be picked up anywhere. All my cats/kittens are doing great and have no signs of FIP. Also as to the contract that we both signed (paragraph 3) it states that I will replace the kitten if the said kitten was to have a congenital defect within the one year health guarantee. Again I'm sorry for your loss. Talk to you soon. Thank You -breeder


To which I brought up alll the great FIP topics we had discussed over the phone.
Her response:

Breeder,

When I called you on the phone and told you Harrys symptoms you immediately told me that you have bad news for me and that he has FIP and that one of his littermates had already died of it.. and that you had already sent out emails to two of the owners explaining the bad news, and you were going to send one out to me this past Saturday?
I believe that you also told me that you would refund me when I asked over the phone?

By the time we made the choice to put Harry down.. he had all the symptoms of FIP. I have photos showing how enlarged his stomache was and how small and skeletal he was. We thought about just taking him straight to the vet to have him euthanized, but it was so hard we couldn't do it. We ended up driving around and speaking to every vet between Fond du lac and Milwaukee to see if it all lines up to be FIP.
I can give you the numbers, but none of them had any doubts that it was FIP.

So, after you tell me that the litter was infected, that you would give me a refund, and that Harry has FIP.. you're saying that you're basically not willing to do anything as far as refunds or exchanges?

I only had Harry for a month.. This isn't as though I've had him for a year and he randomly got it. You know, I believe you're the one who told me that you didn't want me to waste my money on vet bills trying to diagnose what Harry has.

Now that's what you wanted?

breeder:

Yes, with the symptoms that you describe to me sounded like it may be FIP. I do know what FIP is and know the symptoms. I'm so sorry if you miss understood me I did not say he has FIP. I have not lost any of my kittens to FIP or said that they are infected, I have not e-mailed anybody telling them so. I did say to you that I often e-mail the new owners to check on the health of there kittens. You may need to look over the contract and the part that I'm not responsible for any diagnosis of FIP because it can be caught anywhere. I did not tell you to euthanize your cat and I did not tell you not to help him. I'm so sorry for your lose and I know that you are angry and blame me however when he left my house he was a healthy boy.
 
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havingalook

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Not good ellie, she's totally back tracking.

Can't think of the top of my head on what you should do specifically, but you should definately get some compensation and not a replacement kitten if she offers one.

How did you pay? Can you claim a refund through your credit card?

Send her your vet details and an email stating what you've told us and what you want from the situation eg; a refund.

Have you got any way to contact her other kittens owners? Place classifieds on Hoobly etc asking for people to come forward, these classifieds will show up on search engines etc.

Not sure how it is here, but in England you can get an hours free legal advice. Definately worth getting a lawyer to write a lettter to her seeking compensation.

Name and shame, if she doesn't help you resolve this.

I'll try and think of other things you can do. Sorry for your loss.
 

Mews2much

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PM me the breeders name and I will see if I have heard of them.
You can call TICA and complain but you need the other person to back you up also.
It is true FIP is not covered in contracts.
Did you take him to the vet within 3 days of getting him?
Most breeders have it in the contract that use must see a vet withing 48 to 72 hours after getting the cat.
 

havingalook

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It is true FIP is not covered in contracts.

Thats true but surely if it came from the cattery with FIP then its the breeders responsibility.

If I sold a kitten and it became sick after contact with the new owners animals etc, then its the owners responsibility, but if I sold a litter of kittens and they all started dying from the same disease, at the same time, then it would be my 'job' to make things right.

Not bringing morals or such into it, its just the right thing to do, if she sold a sick kitten then she should make things right with the new owner.
 

ellie4-12

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Not good ellie, she's totally back tracking.

Can't think of the top of my head on what you should do specifically, but you should definately get some compensation and not a replacement kitten if she offers one.

How did you pay? Can you claim a refund through your credit card?

Send her your vet details and an email stating what you've told us and what you want from the situation eg; a refund.

Have you got any way to contact her other kittens owners? Place classifieds on Hoobly etc asking for people to come forward, these classifieds will show up on search engines etc.

Not sure how it is here, but in England you can get an hours free legal advice. Definately worth getting a lawyer to write a lettter to her seeking compensation.

Name and shame, if she doesn't help you resolve this.

I'll try and think of other things you can do. Sorry for your loss.

Is it okay if I mention her cattery name? OR should I just say " Kittens from breeder in IL who have contracted FIP"
 

havingalook

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Is it okay if I mention her cattery name? OR should I just say " Kittens from breeder in IL who have contracted FIP"


Initially I would put that, just to try and find out how many others are going through the same thing right now.

If you aren't naming names when trying to find other buyers, then she can't get nasty and say your slandering her name (or whichever the written word is slander/ libel?) and you can gather information, in case you need it.
 

Mews2much

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Ok I ahve never heard of her.
What she did is wrong and her website is not very good at all.
See if you can find others with kittens that had FIP.
I think it is rude of her not to give a refund.
It is not your fault thi shas happened.

 

myspecialboy

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If you aren't naming names when trying to find other buyers, then she can't get nasty and say your slandering her name (or whichever the written word is slander/ libel?) and you can gather information, in case you need it.

(It's libel. Thanks, Fundamentals of Nursing! Hahaha)

I agree that you shouldn't call out the name of the cattery, but I am curious as to which it is because I'm thinking of getting another Sphynx and I live in Indiana, so I could very well get one from Illinois.

Also, I've been researching FIP and I read that it takes weeks, months, and even years to develop into FIP after the initial infection of the coronavirus. How long have you had Harry before he started getting sick? While she cannot say it came from her, she also cannot say it didn't and if you haven't had him long, then it's likely it did come from her; not sure if that would help out. I don't know much about the law other than HIPPA. Oh, and the libel/slander thing... hahaha
 

kerrie78

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Did your vet do a necropsy after Harry was put down? That is the only 100% sure diagnosis of FIP; you may want to call your vet & see if they can take samples to send.
 

ellie4-12

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i had Harry for no more than a month, and he spent the last week with Wet symptoms of FIP and now that we think about it.. wasn't extremely active the two weeks before that.

We just thought he was a little sleepier and colder than usual..
It's my first sphynx and I thought it was normal for Wisconsin fall and winters

I will call and try to put Harrys cremation on hold as soon as the vet opens up
 

pinupcats

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PM me the breeders name and I will see if I have heard of them.
You can call TICA and complain but you need the other person to back you up also.
It is true FIP is not covered in contracts.
Did you take him to the vet within 3 days of getting him?
Most breeders have it in the contract that use must see a vet withing 48 to 72 hours after getting the cat.

No, most contracts don't cover FIP but MOST responsible breeders will replace/refund for the kitten. I have a great FIP letter that I have all my adoptee's sign.

What triggers FIP in cats is still a cosmic mystery. Some have a theory that kittens with lower immune systems are more apt to develop FIP than kittens with stronger immune systems. Some feel that FIP can be evident in certain lines, others say the male can pass it on. There are so many theories but nothing concrete. Most cats are exposed to the Corona virus and it's a mutation of that virus that forms FIP. Both wet and dry forms.

It's a truly horrible thing to happen and I am sorry that this breeder is not stepping up to the plate and taking responsibilty for your loss. At the very least, she should replace the kitten.

If you breed long enough, you will be effected at some point with something horrible. How you deal with that horrible situation is what will define you as a breeder.

I truly am sorry for your loss and I do hope that this person will take responsibility and work with you on this issue.

Hang in there,
Cyndee
 

Pbinky

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i'm so sorry to hear about this. My baby boy Skinner came home to me and within days was diagnosed with Giardia and then a couple of weeks after that he had upper respiratory infection. The breeder was beside himself with sorrow as well as confusion as he honestly didn't know the Skinner was sick. He said that he was going to take care of his kitties and have them all treated for Giardia, even so they showed no signs and have them looked at for URI. He then offered me a new kitty (when one came available after he "cleaned house") to which i refused and he then gave me my money back that i paid for Skinner to help me with the vet bills. My breeder is registered with TICA and he showed such professionalism as well as humanitarianism (or sphynxitarianism) towards the situation. Boy was i lucky. I'm so sorry you have to deal with first the tragic loss of your kitty and second an A__hole who won't own up to a mistake.
I wonder if you call the local humane society with the legitimate concern that they are breeding sick cats or exposing cats to lethal viruses. If not to get your money back but at least for the safety and well being of the cats that do live there. This is an awful situation indeed.
 

ellie4-12

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Just to update everyone-

I just spoke with the vet and they are holding onto Harrys body for a week. So I could find out if he positively had FIP.

Do you think I should get him tested?
 

Mews2much

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Yes it is very important that you have him tested.
That way you will know for sure if it was FIP or something else.
 

kerrie78

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Just to update everyone-

I just spoke with the vet and they are holding onto Harrys body for a week. So I could find out if he positively had FIP.

Do you think I should get him tested?



ABSOLUTELY. That is going to be your rock to stand on with the breeder.
 

ellie4-12

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Okay.. i will talk to Ben today and work out a way to afford it.

Does anyone know of any other good classifieds to post at? I have something running on Hoobly and a yahoo sphynx rescue group.
 

havingalook

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Just to update everyone-

I just spoke with the vet and they are holding onto Harrys body for a week. So I could find out if he positively had FIP.

Do you think I should get him tested?

Definitely. You need to know 100% that it was FIP.
 

lovinsphynx

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Ellie, i would contact a lawyer to go over the contract and find loop holes, every contract has loop holes and what she has done is not okay, she is selling sick cats you should also check to see if she is registered with the dep of agriculture in her area and if so i would report it i hope she at leasts makes this right for you it's bad enough you had to go through this and i can't even fathom your pain! can you pm me the breeders name? ray ray and tuttles came from a breeder in indiana and while they do not have fip tuttles has a deformitity with his body the vet said most likely from inbreeding.
 

PitRottMommy

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Ellie, I'm so sorry to hear that you're going through this. I hope that others reading this will see why it's so important to go with a REPUTABLE breeder with LOTS of people that stand behind their kittens and you can personally see them living to an old age. I would recommend contacting not only TICA and CFA but also the BBB. Intelligent people will look at the better business bureau before spending $1000+ on a kitten and this may be your only SOLID way to ensure that the word gets out WITHOUT stirring the pot, so to speak and using the internet to essentially trash this breeder's reputation.

What I would do at this moment is become VERY buddy-buddy with your vet because it's their final say that will decide whether or not the breeder gets the information you want them to have. Schedule a consultation--EVEN IF IT MEANS PAYING EXTRA--and explain the situation. Don't become rude or accusitive with the vet, simply model yourself as the victim and ask for their help and recommendation. If they ask you to do something in the aspect of finding out whether or not it's FIP, don't ask questions--DO IT. It could mean the difference between a yes and a no for your refund.

Remember, it's ILLEGAL to diagnose a pet in the United States without a veterinary license. If she's even so much as offering medical diagnosis over the phone (even in casual conversation), this can very quickly become a misdemeanor (and in some cases federal) offense.

I would also contact a lawyer to discuss the contract with. That contract is there to protect you, the breeder and the kitten. The kitten's side has already gone under the way side and the breeder isn't standing behind the health of the kitten. This means that she's not going to stand behind your rights either. Do something about that.

And, the biggest thing I want to relay to those following this thread and the OP is this: DO NOT ACCEPT A REPLACEMENT KITTEN. I'm sure this goes without saying, but I've seen other threads in the past where a very sick kitten was obtained with a transmissible disease and the owners wound up taking home a replacement kitten (likely to have the same disease). This is extremely poor judgement. Ask for your money back and do not be satisfied with anything but this. Another sick kitten will not fix the problem.

Best of luck, Ellie. Keep us posted!
 

Mews2much

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The price of the kitten was very low for a sphynx also.
I am sorry for everyone on this site that ha had so many problems with bad breeders in the last few months.
You can write to the head of the region of TICA you are in also besides the main office.
She did not even give you the blue slip which is a red flag right there.
 
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