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Orphans & Adoption fees? & S/N?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
So...long story short, I have a litter of 5 orphaned kittens, I have been Mommy too since August 1st. They are off the bottle and eating solid food, hooray!!!!! However, they had a very rocky start, we are still playing catch up so they are going to be here a while.

This litter has had major problems, eye infections, ulcers, dehydration, weight loss, diarrhea, anorexia and one with a front leg issue that we are hoping is going to resolve now that we have eliminated the swelling.

Man, oh man, I've had some bills for these kittens:

About $150 in canned formula. Around here it's $7.99 per can. Tried the powder, couldn't get it to mix well and they didn't like it.

Then we had several vet visits totally nearly $700 and that's with the last 3 visits being free because my vet started to feel sorry for me.

So trust me, it's not about the money (Although I didn't have it to spend) but I'm trying to find out what a reasonable adoption fee would be for these kitties. I will not do "free to a good home" I'm just outside of NYC and there are too many people that do awful things with FREE animals (i.e dog fighting, etc.) and they will be going home with some vetting. I have been volunteering for rescue and fostering for YEARS, but never had to handle the back end adoption stuff - just the tear jerking task of giving up my babies. The random little ones I have found - or have found me, I've always found good homes for through people I know. But I think I have exhausted all my kitty home resources and will have to do some real adoptions...

They have been tested for FIV/FeLV - negative. I will test once more before they leave.

They have all been dewormed now 2x.

They will receive their first set of shots.

S/N....I am unsure what to do here. I have already applied for low cost certificates for each kitten, which I can send them home with. However, I feel compelled to have it done before letting them go. The problem....already nearly $1,000 in - I really can't shell out any more cash to have a litter of 5 spayed.

I can lay it out if I know I will get it back, but do you think people will pay $75 or so for an adoption through a private party? I've contacted every low cost s/n in my area. There are some that will do it for $35 males/$50 females, but how stupid is this...they REQUIRE them to be 6 months old first. So, that option is out. The next best is $65 for females and $50 for males through friends of animals.

I just want to do what's best for them. I really don't want to send them out into this world without altering them first (just incase!) considering how they came to be in the first place (neighbors with unneutered outdoor cats!) but I don't want to ruin their chance of adoption by charging such a high fee either.

I'm torn....

post #2 of 3
Babies are expensive aren't they?! Congrats on getting them through thus far. I don't see why anyone would be opposed to paying $75 to adopt a kitten from you, as long as you can show their history (and pass the records along to the new owners) of their worming, shots, etc.

I know some people will not let them go without altering them first. Others who let them go without having them spayed or neutered ask for a deposit of say $50 with a promise to return the deposit once they can prove the kitty has been fixed.

Guess it depends on what you feel is best. Also, I'm sure you do, but just in case, it's helpful to ask the potential owners if they will keep the cat indoors/outdoor and if they plan to declaw. This helps to make your decision easier.

Good luck with those babies.
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
Oh yeah, indoor and no-declawing is a must.
The deposit idea isn't bad. Actually what they did with my latest addition, but it still makes me nervous. I know that I DO the right thing, but trusting everyone else to do the same, is just so hard.

I have all vet records, vet gave me large bottle of strongid so I did the deworms myself, but have the receipt for the meds and have been keeping a log of what's been done. He would also provide me paperwork if needed. He knows me well and I literally have been in his office atleast 2x a week since they arrived. I also will do the vaccines myself, as I learned how to administer them years ago during rescue work. I will have the individual viles though and can provide the label that peels off on paperwork. So, it will be all legit.

I have bottle fed and handraised before, but never had THIS much of an expense for fosters. Not to mention that I adopted 3 kittens over the last 4 months and have all my own baby expenses I've been shelling out for as well.

I have to say though, these babies were lucky to have been born in my yard...I must have neon sign flashing on my rooftop that says "Sucker" on it.
My neighbors on both sides seem to think it's okay to leave their un-neutered cats outside. I'm sure one of them fathered this litter. I had the very unpleasant experience of telling them that one of their cats was hit by a car yesterday morning. I drove past and saw him one block over. You'd think this would be a wake up call to them. But sure enough their other kitty is still sitting on the top of my car today...so sad. They even told me this is the 2nd cat to get hit by a car. What is it going to take?

They were talking about getting a new kitten today. It took everything I had to keep my mouth shut about the babies in my house. I do NOT want them to know, I would NEVER give them a kitty. I hate to say that, but I just couldn't. I am still sad for them, and for the little kitty. He was a sweetheart and I miss seeing his little face in my driveway.

Okay, waay off topic, sorry!

As for getting them this far, we aren't out of the water yet, but we are doing SO much better compared to before. They are underweight though, considerable. Except for one strong boy who has been way bigger from the start. The one girl with the leg problem is very behind in everything compared to her siblings, but man she has spirit, she sooooo sweet too. Boyfriend wants to keep her, but I just can't. I wish we had a bigger house or we would.

Thanks for responding!!
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