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A few questions.

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I have a female longhair cat that's about 14 month's old. I've been told she's what's called a tortoiseshell. Her coloring is consistent with a google image search shows for tortoiseshell.

For all intents and purposes this is the first cat I've ever personally owned and I really don't know squat about cats. She really doesn't have any particular bad habits as far as I know but I'd like to learn more. I got her just after she was weaned. The girl I got her from said it was a week or two early - but they had some problems going on at the time and had no choice - it was early or never.

I have a 7 year old runt of a beagle as well and they get along pretty well. If given the opportunity he'll sniff her rear and she has a habit of jumping on him and play-fighting. Usually he just ignores her but occasionally he'll play-fight with her. Pretty funny to watch. The dog is pretty good with other animals, He'll even let her eat out of his food bowl while he's eating.

Here's a pic of them both from a few days after I got her.

First off, we my roommate has an old (12-14ish) male cat thats lived here for about 3 years. He decided at first glance (when she was a fumbling kitten) that he didn't want anything to do with her and hasn't changed his mind since. Occasionally she'll try to initiate some interaction with him - but he'll hiss and snarl and head off to his corner. Is there any hope they'll become friendly? They never outright fights. She gets close and he gets pissy and runs off.

We were kind of hoping that they would breed but even though she's gone into heat several times(I think) he doesn't show any interest. Is he too old? I didn't think male cats needed to *like* the female to breed - but maybe they do?

About once a month she get into a strange mood. She'll follow you around all day meowing and mewling like she wants something. Every time you say something to her she'll reply with some sort of purr, meow, mewl or other noise and will often stick her rear up in your direction at the same time. She also rolls around alot and pretty much stays noisy for 3-4 days. I assume that's means she's in heat. She started doing that around 10 or 11 months, so she's done it 4 or 5 times now.

Now she does have another odd habit. A couple times of day she tries to "Milk" me. That's the best way I can describe it. She'll come up to me and start making this purring/chirping sound and start licking me - but only on heavy clothes or a blanket. If I have a robe on, she'll go for it. Or if I'm in bed she'll attack me. She'll start licking and pushing on me with her paws back and forth and flexing her claws. As I was writing this she hopped up on the arm of my chair and did it to my shoulder for a minute.

She usually does it for 2-3 minutes then either leaves or falls asleep. It's pretty common for her to get in the bed when I go to bed and do that then sleep next to me for a few hours. If I've been away from home for a day or two she'll pretty much attack me within a minute or two of sitting down. I was gone last weekend for a halloween party. I came in sunday, sat down to relax and she came flying in, lept into my lap, chirped at me then went for my shoulder and started slobbering it up. Aside from it being odd, I don't mind except for the claws - I'll only let her do it if I have something thick on otherwise it's quite painful.

So - any idea why she does that?

Thanks in advance,
post #2 of 12
Hi Brian. Welcome to TCS!

What your cat is doing is called nesting (or makin' biscuits). It's something she did as a kitten to stimulate the milk in her mother. It's not a bad thing. It shows shes content. Lots of cats do that before they settle down for a nap.
post #3 of 12
Hi, sounds like you have a great kitty, dog, and ... well, another cat! I really want to make a suggestion here though, and that is to please do everyone a big favor and have your kitty spayed - it can make a difference to future health if nothing else - she'll be less likely to develop any kind of female tumors for one thing, plus going through heat is not really fun for her if she doesn't get satisfied. You could also end up with problems trying to keep her inside in future and once a cat in heat goes out, she's very likely to never return. BTW, she looks to me more like a tabby than a tortie, but that doesn't matter to anything.
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
I want her to have kittens once before I do that. I already have homes arranged in advance though.
post #5 of 12
This is not to knock your cat, who I'm sure is very sweet, but what makes her kittens better than a cat at the SPCA? There's no waiting list there, either.

This is your first cat, and you admit you know very little about caring for them. Do you know how to care for kittens? Do you know how expensive it is to get them their first, second, and third round of shots? Do you know that they shouldn't go to their new homes until they're 3 months old, meaning your house needs a "kitten room" for 6 weeks and will be full of kittens for the next 6 weeks? Can you keep the older cat away from the kittens to make sure he doesn't attack them?

Breeding cats is a lot of work for professional breeders. There's a reason that most people who just happen to have a cat that gets pregnant gets rid of them as soon as they're done weaning -- it's TONS of work. And 4 weeks is WAY too early -- you end up with a kitten that's badly adjusted to other animals and other people because it was taken away from its littermates and mom much too early.

Why do you want her to have kittens? Her life won't be suddenly better or worse if she breeds, and many people will argue that the longer a female cat goes unspayed, the more health issues she runs into when she's older. Pet population problems isn't just something funny that Bob Barker talks about, it's a real issue.
post #6 of 12
Unless your cat is a pedigree, she really should be spayed. Its very unhealthy for her to continue to go in and out of heat all the time. She is prone to getting early cancer or pyrometria (which can kill her).

And your 14 yr old male who is not neutered is also risking cancers by not being neutered. And I'd be very shocked if this male has never sprayed either.

The BEST thing you can do with your beautiful girl is to make an appointment to get her spayed.

IF you don't take our advice here on the board about spaying and why it should be done, then be prepared to do this (and if you can't do all this, then get her spayed).

1. Have her tested for FELV, FIP and the male too. A responsible breeder tests their cats for these and possible genetic problems before they breed.

2. Be financially prepared for an emergency c-section if she has problems delivering kittens. And if she does, you may be looking at bottle feeding newborn kittens for several weeks about every 2-3 hrs.

3. Have homes lined up for people to adopt kittens. And have a written contract that the kittens will be spayed or neutered by 3-4 months old. Also in the contract you should be willing to take back any kitten she has if the new owner cannot keep the kitten/cat in the future. AFTER ALL YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR EVERY KITTEN YOU BRING INTO THIS WORLD.

4. You must be willing to keep these kittens for a minimum of 10-12 weeks old so they are not only completely litter trained and eating solid foods, but more important is the time spent with mom/siblings so they become well adjusted kittens emotionally and physically.

Now I'm sure you have a lovely little kitty; but if you really love this cat, then spay her!
post #7 of 12
Every breeder of cats who has been doing it long enough has some awful tale to tell about losing a mother cat or kittens due to pregnancy complications - and these are people that dedicate their lives to breeding, know the genetic background of their cats going back generations, and keep them in tip top condition.

Are you prepared for your cat to die of a complication during pregnancy or birth? Or to have to bury a litter of premature, undeveloped kittens? Do you have the money to rush her to the vet for a C-section? From the moment a cat gets pregnant to the time the kittens leave will cost well over $1000 in food and vet care. There is also the risk that your cat could develop pyometra (a uterine infection which can be fatal- and I have heard several examples of pregnant cats getting it and mother and unborn kittens all dying), and breast cancer later in life. Pregnancy takes a lot out of a cat, as does going through heat after heat. Please consider what you are planning to put your cat through.
post #8 of 12
Welcome to the site.

Its great that the dog and cat get along, its so cute to see ya all sleeping.

Has the other cat deffinatly not been neutured? my cat has his balls/testicles they are just skin though as there is nothing in them

I volunteer at a cat shelter, its been a great way to learn about cats and they are always in need of help. I only do one day a week.

our shelter is full as is a lot of the other members who volunteer on here, we get calls everyday wanting to know if we can take more cats or kittens, we have over 70 cats and are a non profit non kill shelter, the cats are adorable and its so hard to turn other cats down but legally we are not allowed to take any more

Anyways what i was trying to say is maybe you can convince the people who you have lined up to take your kittens to visit a shelter to, that way it will help with the general over population.

If you do go ahead and have kittens, Have you thought about what you are going to charge for your kittens, or drawn up a policy with the new owners to ensure that if they ever give the kitten up it will be returned to you, this ensures that the kitten wont end up in shelters, also watch out for the people who will take your kittens and try and sel them to make money, always try and do a home check before giving any kittens up.

Oh and what part of VA are you in, I can point you to a brilliant little shelter if you are inerested
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Slow down here folks - I used to work in the animal industy - just not with cats in particular so I'm well aware of the time and effort involved in raising animals.

But let's try to focus on my questions here - if you don't mind

Is the male cat too old to mate? Or could it be a social issue (ie: he doesn't like her).

As far as I know he's not neutered. He has his testicles intact. He wandered up to my roommate one day as a stray kitten and has just stuck around ever since. He's never been to the vet although once they moved in I arranged for him to get his shots. I have a family member who is a vet tech - so I only need to pay for the actual cost of the shots - not the vet fees and etc.
So that makes things alot cheaper.

I looked up the "making biscuits" behavior and it sound pretty close to what she does - except none of them mentioned the frantic slobbering she does in addition. Is that aspect normal?

The initial plan was to let the male cat "cheese" breed with the new female. We wanted to keep 1 of the kittens and the rest went to homes. I used to live in west virginia and I know a couple farmers who are in need of new barn cat's soon. So they agreed to take the rest of the kittens (2-3 each).
They would handle the spaying/neutering.

Before any of you jump down my throat for that - barn cats have it nice. Fresh food and water in addition all the rats and mice they can handle. They get their own cat houses in the barn and have atleast 5-10 acres to romp around on.
post #10 of 12
there is a cat at the shelter I work at that slobbers when she get petted, she really enjoys it and slobbers like a dog..
post #11 of 12
The male is probably too old to mate. We still advocate to get your cat spayed. If the farmer wants more cats, its not too hard to pick up a couple of cats from other farmers or from craigslist in his area!

IMO there is no legit reason WHY you should be breeding your cat. Maybe you should re-read everything we all said till it sinks in!
post #12 of 12
The cat and the kitten aren't going to get along right away. It takes time. Do a google search (or a board search) for "second cat introduction". Doing it the right way can help the cats get along.

There is no reason to mate your kitten with another cat. Just because you have homes lined up for them doesn't make it ok. There are plenty of kittens already out there who need homes. It is irresponsible to not spay/neuter your pet, unless you are part of a purebread breeding program (which you're not). Making your cat have kittens isn't something to take lightly. People are "jumping on you" for good reason. Your roomate's cat needs to be neutered also. You said you've worked in the "animal industry" but that you "don't know squat about cats", and you came to this forum for advice. That doesn't mean you are going to like what people have to say, even if it is slightly off-topic.

Spaying your kitten can help prevent her from certain diseases (like cancer). Also, 1 female cat and 1 male cat will produce 420,000 kittens in 7 years. Pet overpopulation is a MAJOR problem. You are not going to find much support here for making your cat have a litter of kittens. There are plenty of barn cats / mousers on petfinder or Craigslist, there is absolutely no need to make more. You have no idea if they will spay or neuter the kittens you give them. A contract would help but wouldn't have any teeth unless you followed up on it (and you should).

Congratulations on your kitten, she is adoreable!
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