Most of the time you notice it yourself when you come across dubious breeders. Your gut feeling will automatically tell you that something is wrong. Particularly clear warning signs are when the alleged pedigree cats are sold out of the trunk or are offered online at a low price (less than 400 euros). In this case, you should not buy pedigree cats there, in order not to support such practices. After all, demand largely determines supply.
Buy pedigree cat: trust your feeling
If you are not sure about a private individual, but the cats seem to be properly bred, try the following: Ask to be allowed to visit the entire litter with the parents, and also visit the kennel. If you are denied this personal contact, you should become suspicious.
Pay attention to the family tree and other papers
You can also recognize dubious breeders by the fact that they sell alleged pedigree cats without pedigree. They do not belong to any cat breeding club or association and are therefore not bound by any guidelines. If the missing membership is excused at too high a cost, you should know that the fees for this are only between 30 and 60 euros per year and a family tree costs about 15 to 20 euros.
Only with the help of the pedigree can you see whether it is a real, properly raised pedigree cat. Also make sure that the vaccination papers certify that the kitten has been immunized twice against cat sniffing and disease. The first vaccination takes place at the age of eight to ten weeks, the second vaccination at 12 to 16 weeks.
Dubious breeders are profit-oriented
The fact is: You cannot earn money with a serious breed. Therefore, basically every good breeder who cares about the well-being of his animals is a hobby breeder. Unfortunately, the term "hobby breeding" alone is not a quality feature, because even unscrupulous multipliers sometimes pretend to be loving hobby breeders. Not always a dubious provider can be unmasked by the advertisement, because some fraudsters are so brazen to sell supposed purebred cats at the usual high price and to give false information in the advertisement.
Therefore, always go personally to the breeder and see for yourself. If the provider does not appear to be untrustworthy by refusing to meet you personally, there are other warning signs. Dubious breeders often hand in their kittens too early and do not meet the minimum age of 12 weeks. The minimum age is due to the fact that kittens that used to be separated from their mother could not yet learn everything a cat needs to know from her. The animals are usually fearful, insecure or show other forms of behavioral disorders such as aggressiveness. In addition, the necessary vaccinations can only be given at this age at the earliest.
Anyone who breeds for greed and disregards animal welfare often has a striking number of kittens on offer each year. This shows that the breeding cats are not allowed to take sufficient breaks between litters to recover from the last birth and to take care of each kitten with care. A breeding cat should not be expected to have more than three litters in two years, only one litter per year is even better. At the age of six, breeding cats from reputable suppliers are also allowed to "retire"; if the cat mother is older or if the breeder is silent on request, you should be puzzled.
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Buy pedigree cat: hole up breeders with questions
Particularly perfidious fraudsters allegedly adhere to these basic rules of cat breeding and still sell animals that later have inherited diseases or reveal other health problems. Therefore, you should insist on full papers and only buy a pedigree cat if you can get them straightforward. In addition to the pedigree, which verifies the origin of the cat, this includes a health certificate, a vaccination card and a purchase contract. In our guide "Purchase contract for cats: what's in it?" you can read what constitutes such a written agreement. The parents should also have perfect health certificates.
Ask the breeder as many questions as possible about the breed, the species-appropriate husbandry, nutrition, health and behavior of the cats. If he can't answer them or reacts with excuses, that's not a good sign. In addition, dubious breeders mostly refrain from asking questions to the potential buyer. This gives the impression that they don't care who they trust with their kittens.
Take a close look at the kennel and the condition of the animals. Caution is advised with the following warning signs:
● The cats are housed in a kennel or shed outside the living area
● You do not have a family connection and cannot hear everyday noises
● The animals have no toys, their common room looks dirty and neglected
● The cats themselves look dirty and neglected
● You seem listless, apathetic or extremely shy and fearful
● The kittens have fleas or other parasites
● The room in which they are housed is too small
● More than two breeds are offered and there are a conspicuously large number of cats in the room
In our guide "Buy pedigree cats: How to recognize good breeders" you can read how to find a reputable provider.