What does it take to become a breeder?

Discussion in 'Sphynx Cat Tails' started by Inferno12, May 4, 2010.

  1. Inferno12

    Inferno12Banned

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    I have been flirting with the idea of breeding naked kitties. I am so in love with the breed and I would love to have more. I would love to contribute the the wellness of the breed but I have so many questions. I have talked to Johnnys breeder about this and she said that she would help me do this ONLY after I have shadowed her for a bit which is OK with me. I do not want to get into this not knowing what im doing.

    I would love some input on how becoming a breeder (cattery) works. Whats the process? What are costs? What are some things to expect? I know I will learn a lot from his breeder but I just dont want one opinion. I want lots!!!!

    Thanks! :BigSmile::BigSmile:
    Dawn
     

  2. TanyaT

    TanyaTV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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  3. Inferno12

    Inferno12Banned

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    Thanks so much. I just joined :ThumbsUp:
     
  4. EmbraceMonChat

    EmbraceMonChatLairian

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    Hey Dawn,

    My advice was going to be that you find yourself a mentor but you already did that! Good for you. It is so much easier when you have a mentor. (Not that any of it is really easy.) Another idea is to show a Sphynx in the alter class. You can learn from the judges evaluations and interpretations of the standard. Your eye will develop so you get a vibe for the type of Sphynx that turns you on. Other breeder/exhibitors will also see that you are really serious about learning and commited to the breed. This can give you a little edge when you are ready to get your own intact cats.

    The other thing is get ready to be a "line chaser", meaning you obsess over pedigrees and research them to obsession. Because of the HCM factor, studying pedigrees is really important. I am finding that out myself.

    Oh, and study the breed standard! Look at cat pics (or in person if you're lucky) and figure out where the ears are, what the different muzzles look like, the difference between a short face and a long face...and don't forget to get a "feel" for the body too.

    Good luck!
     
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    • TanyaT

      TanyaTV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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      Great advice Susan!! I have a mentor who want me to show for a while before I can get a breeder from her. Which is fine because I want to learn more about the standard! I love this breed!!! Good luck to you!!!
       
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      • Mews2much

        Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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        I plan on breeding in the future and have been trying to come up with a cattery name.
        I was told to show in the alter class also.
        Wrinkles breeder has offered to help me but she does not show..
        I have been learning the standards for both TICA and CFA.
        I know what is liked and not liked about my cats in TICA.
        Cleo is well liked in CFA and the judges said she would go all the way.
        These same judges do not like Wrinkles.
        I also have a Mentor that is a breeder that shows but she does not like in my state.
        I do study peds.






         
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        • Luvmysphynx

          LuvmysphynxSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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          You've been given some great advise so far! I'm not a cat breeder, but I have done alot of research into it. I already am devoted to showing and improving Italian Greyhounds, I don't feel as though I have the time to do justice to them and Sphynx both. That said, one big expense of being a responsible breeder is health testing - With Sphynx, you've got to keep a very clean cattery to prevent rapidly spreading diseases, like herpes. Testing new cats BEFORE you bring them home is also a great idea. Showing an altered cat is a great way to get experience and contacts in the show world. HCM testing should be done every year on any breeding cat, and in my opinion, a breeder should also be financially secure enough and responsible enough to take back any kitten they breed, healthy or not. Pedigree research is extremely important, as HCM is becoming more and more common in Sphynx, do you have what it takes to take back an HCM cat and care for it until it passes? Are you prepared for the reality that Sphynx kittens are very fragile, even more so then other kittens alot of the time, and it's common to loose at least 1 kitten in every litter? I know some experienced breeders that have lost half a litter or in some cases the entire litter no matter what they did! Being a breeder is a wonderful goal, but not inexpensive at all, and while it can be rewarding, it can also be heartwrenching. I've been breeding and showing Italian Greyhounds for the last 5 years, in that time I've only had 3 litters - In those 3 litters I'm blessed to have only lost 1 puppy. I know where each and every one of my babies is to this day, and follow their progress. I also do alot of rescue, and I must admit, being a breeder is every bit as hard as being a rescuer, the time and money it takes can be quite extensive. I'm lucky in the fact none of the babies I've bred have ever had any major health problems other then the 1 little girl I kept myself. But if they ever did and the owner couldn't afford the high cost of medical care, I would feel as though the responsibility to insure they recieved proper medical care would fall to me. I brought them into this world, and I feel that even though they're in new homes, they are still my responsibility until the day they die. Just some things on the financial thing to think about.
           
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          • Inferno12

            Inferno12Banned

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            This is the type of information that I was looking for. Thanks so much guys. I am going to look into showing Johnny and continue to do my research. Any tips on how to get started in the showing aspect of all this?
             
          • holly_savage

            holly_savageBanned

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            Talk to Jacky (Mews2mews)...she is the resident show expert!
             
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            • Mews2much

              Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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              Thanks Holly.
              Infernal I can give you advice on showing.
              I have this sat and another show May 15th/16th.
              Do you have permission from the breeder to show?
              If you look you look under social groups on here I have a group on showing.
              Also you can join my group on fb.
              It is called showing sphynx cats.

               
            • Inferno12

              Inferno12Banned

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              I have no idea but I will ask her. I know she shows her cats as well so hopefully she can help me with that.

              I joined the group here and Im sure there will be lots and lots of information there for me!
               
            • susi794

              susi794Moderator Staff Member

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              You've gotten good advice from others, and you're not rushing into anything yet, so I'll just toss a few things out there for your consideration. You said you travel a lot during the summer--who would be there to make sure the babies were ok? You need to be close to monitor their health and the postpartum health of your queen as well. You've got to be willing to assist in delivering a kit if you need to, as some mamas want you to be there while others prefer you're not. You've got to be willing to spend the money on endless vet bills, be emotionally ready for heartache and more heartache as you sometimes watch your babies fade away and are powerless to do anything about it. You've got to be willing to stay up all night tube feeding 6 kits that refuse to suckle--and that includes inserting the tubes. You've got to be willing to endure legs that look like jigsaw puzzles from the scratches as they loving climb your legs to give you kitten kisses. You've got to be willing to drive like a bat out of Hell in the middle of the night because you have to get to the emergency vet with a kitten who has diarreah and feels like it's getting too cool...or too hot...or too skinny...or too lethargic. You've got to be willing to fall in love and then have your heart ripped out because you just lost one..or two....or the whole litter. You've got to know what to do and be willing to do it if your queen turns out not to be a good mama and abandons the kits. You've got to have a million kisses you want to give out....be ready to part with them when it's time to go to their forever homes...fall in love over and over and over again....and spend every dime you ever hope to have on trying to keep everybody clean, fed, healthy and loved. You've gotta be willing to clean up tiny little kitten poops, or get them to poop when you bottle or tube feed. But after all that...you gotta be ready for the joy of loving some little babies more than you ever thought possible to love anything.
               
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              • Inferno12

                Inferno12Banned

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                THANK YOU SUSI!!!! This is what I was looking for. My plan for the summer.....(like I said, I have lots of research to do) to breed during the winter! I do have a partner that will be here to take care of the cats when I am gone but I plan on doing my breeding during my slow season! I dont plan on doing lots of litters of kittens. I want to be like my breeder and only have a litter or two a year. I am not going to be in this for the money but in this for what is healthy for the cats.

                I thank you again for being honest. This is what I need to hear. I dont want surprises....well I cant have NO surprises, but I want to know the bad stuff to expect. I am willing to give my all to these babies and I will never start this without being 110% prepared. I figure I have at least a year to prepare to get breeder cats then another year to have my first litter. My thoughts could be way off base but I will educate myself more to see if my plan will work!
                 
              • susi794

                susi794Moderator Staff Member

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                Sounds like you have a good plan, Dawn. Do you plan to have your own stud? Because everytime you introduce an alien cat you are putting your own at risk. Ideally you should have a closed set up--no outside germs that way. It would be great if you could have a business partner who didn't live with you--one keeps the queen and the other keeps the stud. It's very difficult to keep them separate and producing only a litter or two a year when they live in the same place. Sexually active males very often spray, call out loudly and can be pretty aggressive. If you can house them seperately without caging someone, it would be good. It's good that your partner would be available while you travel....just in case someone needs assistance. Sounds like you're on the right track with educating yourself first and having a mentor.
                 
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                • gizmo6370

                  gizmo6370Banned

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                  And don't forget to read a lot about HCM....use only hcm tested cats in your breeding program....and learn some genetics....sphynxcolours can be pretty hard to determine if you have no idea :Dizzy:
                   
                • Inferno12

                  Inferno12Banned

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                  Susi that is a great idea. I thought of that but I didnt know that was possible. Maybe I will look into that with my breeder to start.

                  If I show him does this mean he has to loose weight :Question::Question::Question::LOL::LOL::LOL::Question::Question:
                   
                • Mews2much

                  Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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                  The judges like them with nice fat stomachs.
                  Susi that what I need some partner that would have a whole male.
                  There also is something i have not told anyone yet.
                  There is a new breed of cat the plan is I will be one of the breeders.
                  They need 10 breeders and I have been asked to be one of them.
                  I need to come up with a cattery name.
                  The breed is called a Helki.










                   
                • TanyaT

                  TanyaTV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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                  What is Helki? A kind of sphynx? Very cool if you do that! When would you do that?
                   
                • Mews2much

                  Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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                  No it is not a sphynx.
                  They do have some of the waves of the rex.
                  My friend is the creator of the breed and I may start doing it this year.
                  I will see her in Reno in 1.5 weeks.


                   
                • TanyaT

                  TanyaTV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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                  very cool!!
                   
                • ilovemysphynx

                  ilovemysphynxAdministrator Staff Member

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                  Sounds interesting do you have a picture of a Helki? how many are there so far?
                   
                • susi794

                  susi794Moderator Staff Member

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                  Yeah, what is the Helki a cross between? And Having your own separately housed stud is the perfect solution to the issue--they are less likely to spray, you control when they mate your females and nobody has to be penned up or caged. Just don't stud him our with anyone else fro the same reasons of introducing something harmful to your own breeding program. I would love to find someone who lived here and would do that. They could enjoy the stud for their family pet, and I would borrow him for breeding he would be my cat but would be a part of their family. That would be great. Or even go into it as true partners--everything 50/50. But it would have to be someone as passionate as you are about how they need to be cared for, health tested, etc.
                   
                • Sleepyheadkitten

                  SleepyheadkittenSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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                  You have to be prepared to be in debt- and sometimes, it is major debt- from investing in healthy cats, to paying for emergency vet bills, to going to shows... Prepare yourself for NOT making a profit and usually ending up losing money by the end of the year, if not by the middle (which is how I think this year will end up for me).

                  Also, the plan to breed during only certain months- what are you going to do if you have a female who goes into heavy back to back to back heat cycles? You cannot really 'plan' a time of year to have kittens- some cats are healthier bred more often and then retired early, some cats are healthier being bred less often... You have to do what's healthy for YOUR cats.

                  Good luck :) All in all, it's a grand adventure to go on, but I think anyone breeding will tell you- there are major highs, but the lows can be very low and very very lonely- even with other people there to comfort you .
                   
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                  • ckutkuhn7

                    ckutkuhn7Banned

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                    Awesome thread! I wish everyone luck on their new endeavors!
                     
                  • Inferno12

                    Inferno12Banned

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                    I agree! This has been so eye opening and educational. There are such wonderful and knowledgeable people here. I am sooooo glad I joined and have met all of you!