Welcome to Sphynxlair! Connect with Sphynx owners & enthusiasts around the world!

Questions to ask a breeder

Misty93

Lairian
Joined
Aug 18, 2011
Messages
3
Points
12
Hi everyone!

I made an appearance here a few months ago when my hairy cat died and I started thinking about a sphynx for my next four legged friend. Now I think I am at a stage in my grief where I am ready to bring a new cat home, and I have almost convinced myself I can afford a sphynx.

There is one particular breeder who is very close to me, which I see as insanely lucky as she is the only sphynx breeder I have seen in Wisconsin. However, I don't want to adopt a cat from her just because she's close. I have emailed her to see about visiting her home and her cats, but I confess I don't know what I'd be looking for. I've never bought a purebred cat before, and definitely not a sphynx!

So basically... what questions should I be asking to see if she's a quality breeder with quality cats? What should I be looking for? Any red flags (besides the obvious stuff)?

Thanks!
 

NiceGirlsFakeIt

Lairian
Joined
Dec 25, 2010
Messages
189
Points
41
I made a list of questions to ask my breeder. I actually still have it in my email, so I can copy and paste it to you! Maybe this will help you?

How long have you been breeding Sphynx cats?
How many do you currently have?
Where do they spend the majority of their time? Are they kept in cages? Under foot? In a special room?
Are they up to date on their vaccinations? If so, what vaccinations have they received?
Have their parents been tested for HCM?
Do you provide any sort of health guarantee? If so, what does it cover? (I would not trust a breeder that doesn't cover at least a year)

I emailed my breeder (I got her name from another breeder) and right off the bat, I told her we were not looking for a show quality cat. We had no desire to show or breed him/her and that we were just looking for a cat with a good personality to add to the family. I think this pretty much sets the grounds for things - Your breeder will know what you're looking for.

I also asked for pictures. She sent me pictures of Ming (the one we ended up adopting) and her litter mates, as well as pictures of her parents.

I recommend meeting your breeder in person. I met mine at a cat show and she had a few of her other sphynx with her. If you feel a little iffy about the quality of care, ask to meet your breeder at her house so you can see all of their cats and what kind of conditions they are living in. A reputable breeder will most likely not object. They know people want to avoid the muppy/kitty mills.
 

Inflamed

Gold Lairian
Notable Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2011
Messages
7,516
Points
363
That is pretty much it. If the parents have been tested for hcm ask for the test results as well. I would personally not buy a kitten without meeting it so if you go to see them make sure you also check whether their ears, nails etc are clean. You can also ask about the poo consistancies or take a quick peek in the litter box.

It's very important you feel comfortable with the breeder him/herself so you have good contact with them for any situations that might come up in the future.
Good luck!
 

laurelizarris

Lairian
Joined
Aug 21, 2010
Messages
132
Points
41
Firstly, if she seems happy to have you over to meet her cats at her house, then thats a good first sign IMO.

You should definately ask for some info on HCM, she should be able to inform you a bit about the condition and how its important to check for it. You should preferably be able to see both parents scans, or atleast the mums if they dont own the stud cat.

In England i've never known of any breeder who gives a year long health guarantee, but theres usually an initial health check guarantee which you can check with your own vet, and bring them back if something is wrong.
The main thing for me is to go to a breeder who would always take them back if you could no longer look after them... Hopefully most people understand the commitment needed for a sphynx and wont ever need this guarantee voluntarily, but if something awful happened and no one was there to look after your cat, you know that the breeder can be contacted and they will have somewhere to go and be looked after.

When visiting, you should use your instincts. You should feel like you can trust the breeder, you shouldn't feel awkward or like you daren't ask something.

The cats should be kept in the house so that they're well socialised. Its very important for them to be at lest in the process of litter training, and getting used to strange noises such as pots and pans, the hairdryer, TV etc. If they're already familiar with these things they will settle into a new home a lot quicker.
If she has a 'kitten room' you should be able to go and have a look and sit with the kittens, providing they're old enough for visitors.

The breeder should be able to tell you about their bathing routines, feeding routines, etc and give you any advice you need.

You should also ask about vaccinations and whether the kittens will be neutered/spayed before you can take one home. And if not, must you have this done at a later date?

Ask about prices. For any kitten on the non-active register i.e. pet/not for breeding, they should ideally be the same price, no matter what sex, colour etc. (I always think thats a sign of a dodgy in-it-for-the-money breeder.)

And don't forget to find out who they will be registered with i.e. GCCF, TICA. On buying a kitten you should also get a copy of the pedigree.

Again, instincts, if the house looks grosse and the cats are unkempt or they look ill, or you just plain dont like the breeder, then get out of there!

Hope this helps :BigSmile::LOL:
 

Nofuratu

V.I.P Lairian
V.I.P Lairian
Joined
Jan 17, 2010
Messages
1,659
Points
238
Here are some red flags to look for;

A breeder that gives you the kitten before 4 months of age. Most good breeders wait until they recieve their rabies vx at 16wks.

A breeder that gives you the kitten un neutered ( Nofuratu's breeder had me sign a contract that I would neuter him, and I did but found out later that a responsible breeder will ensure the cat is fixed BEFORE giving him away)

A breeder that claims to scan for HCM and doesnt give you the results

A breeder that doesnt blood test (to prevent failing kitten sydrome - wrong blood types betwen mother and kittens)

A breeder that doesnt offer a good health garantee.

A breeder with low prices for a sphynx. Nofuratu was only $800 plus $250 shipping. Thats a bit low for a sphynx.

A breeder that doesnt discuss how they will support you if a health problem occurs.

Nofuratu's breeder told me she scanned for hcm and that he had no hcm in his lineage. At age 3 he devoloped hcm and I found out that breeder did have other kittens come up with hcm. Also, after his diagnosis, she never talked to me again! she never asked for updates, how he was doing etc!! I updated her twice on his prognosis and then gave up.

Looking back now, I should have asked to see the scans of his parents or have them mailed to me.
I should have wondered why she didnt neuter him before releasing him to me, even if I signed a spay/neuter contract, it shows she didnt really care if he was neutered.

My new breeder for my next kitten which I am getting in a few months has allready emailed me hcm scans, blood test results for blood types and colour tests.
she offers a 2 yr genetic health garantee, and with that I get another kitten from her or my money back AND I get to keep the sick kitten. That is a very good garantee!!
She also has discussed how she will support me emotionally, and with advice if I end up with a sick kitten, not just abandon me when that happens. also her kittens are $1500 which is a more realistic price.
 

Boonecat

Gold Lairian
Notable Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2011
Messages
4,815
Points
338
Good luck in finding the perfect lil' Sphynx baby! Everyone already gave you great advice:ThumbsUp::ThumbsUp:
 

withoutwingz

Lairian
Joined
May 30, 2012
Messages
48
Points
19
I'm so glad this post is here! I have no idea what to look for should I need to adopt a kitten Sphynx (instead of a rescue or whatnot)
 

Sphynx Happy

V.I.P Lairian
V.I.P Lairian
Joined
Dec 17, 2011
Messages
2,956
Points
188
You've already recieved really great advice. I would like to add a few things.

Ask the breeder for his/her contract. You can learn a lot about a breeders breeding practices by reviewing their kitten contract.

If you come across a breeder who has sphynx for $700 it is probably the case they are not a good breeder and are cutting corners to earn more money instead of caring for their cats. If you come across a breeder who sales for more than that it does not mean they are a reputable breeder. Some breeders may charge more without health testing, etc. Reputable breeders charge more because it costs them more to breed responsibly. But some charge more to line their pockets. So make sure you don't base your decision off of price alone.

Good luck on adopting your sphynx.
 

sciumi

Senior Lairian
Senior Lairian
Joined
Oct 1, 2011
Messages
837
Points
143
I didn't know to ask about HCM testing. I'm glad you're getting such great info from everyone here! :) You are definitely off to a great start!

I was really happy about getting to visit the cattery (and not having to worry about shipping!).

The only thing I have to add is: try to find some local options, if only just to visit. I think lots of people here have had great experiences with longer-distance breeders, so don't discount them, but I personally enjoyed being able to visit so much, I think it'd be worth a little extra hunting.


Oh and I definitely agree about the price consideration. It is by far fool-proof, but when I was looking I felt most comfortable in the $1200-$1500 range. And...I don't know, I guess I don't worry too much about a breeder "over-pricing" because breeding Sphynxes (at a location where your customers can visit) seems like a pretty cumbersome way to try to scam people!
 

Cara

Lairian
Joined
Oct 3, 2017
Messages
1
Points
2
I have a 3 month year old sphynx kitty and he has brown like freckles all over his body and I’m very unsure of what it is , someone please help me out !!!!!
 

Catzzzmeow

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 16, 2011
Messages
31,097
Points
673
@Cara this is a post from 2012. We would love to try to help. Try posting a fresh thread and can you include a few pics for ya?
 

ivanna

Lairian
Joined
Nov 24, 2021
Messages
1
Points
0
Here are some red flags to look for;

A breeder that gives you the kitten before 4 months of age. Most good breeders wait until they recieve their rabies vx at 16wks.

A breeder that gives you the kitten un neutered ( Nofuratu's breeder had me sign a contract that I would neuter him, and I did but found out later that a responsible breeder will ensure the cat is fixed BEFORE giving him away)

A breeder that claims to scan for HCM and doesnt give you the results

A breeder that doesnt blood test (to prevent failing kitten sydrome - wrong blood types betwen mother and kittens)

A breeder that doesnt offer a good health garantee.

A breeder with low prices for a sphynx. Nofuratu was only $800 plus $250 shipping. Thats a bit low for a sphynx.

A breeder that doesnt discuss how they will support you if a health problem occurs.

Nofuratu's breeder told me she scanned for hcm and that he had no hcm in his lineage. At age 3 he devoloped hcm and I found out that breeder did have other kittens come up with hcm. Also, after his diagnosis, she never talked to me again! she never asked for updates, how he was doing etc!! I updated her twice on his prognosis and then gave up.

Looking back now, I should have asked to see the scans of his parents or have them mailed to me.
I should have wondered why she didnt neuter him before releasing him to me, even if I signed a spay/neuter contract, it shows she didnt really care if he was neutered.

My new breeder for my next kitten which I am getting in a few months has allready emailed me hcm scans, blood test results for blood types and colour tests.
she offers a 2 yr genetic health garantee, and with that I get another kitten from her or my money back AND I get to keep the sick kitten. That is a very good garantee!!
She also has discussed how she will support me emotionally, and with advice if I end up with a sick kitten, not just abandon me when that happens. also her kittens are $1500 which is a more realistic price.
This is interesting, if possible, could you please tell me where you purchased the kitten you're waiting for? Thank you so much!
 

Yoda mom

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 23, 2012
Messages
20,744
Points
653
@ivanna , welcome to the lair family. do not hesitate to start your own post asking for recommendations so members can PM in conversation.
jump in and enjoy this fun friendly bunch. be sure to check out the sphynx info center for threads on what to expect from a reputable breeder and the fraud tips thread.


 
Top