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Attn breeders: Keeping an intact male question????

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I have a 5 month old Devon Rex male kitten. He is intact (for the moment.) We had an appointment to neuter Monday morning, but Sunday night I got a call from the breeder asking me to seriously consider leaving him a breeding male and showing him (I was already planning on showing him as a premier post neutering.) I know he is not "supercat" but he is quite nice and I had even requested breeding rights before I bought him because I was interested in becoming a breeder. On the other hand, he is literally part of the family and we love him DEARLY and I dread the thought of having to sequester him away from everyone if/when he sprays and/or his personality changes. He is truly a joy and I don't want that taken away from him or us. Jack is literally my disabled son's best friend.

My questions are: Can a male cat be a breeder and stay a lovable pet? What do you do to discourage spraying? *IF* Jack were to stay intact, he would be the only male here. Would that discourage spraying?

Here is a current pic of my chocolate boy if you would like to see him-
post #2 of 16
Some male cats don't spray, but most entire males will start at some point, and it's a more stressful life for them if they aren't neutered.

My honest opinion is that 'quite nice' is not good enough reason to be used as a stud. There are lots of nice cats around, but only the best should be bred from. Who would he be bred with if you don't have enough queens to keep him happy? They can get very frustrated and stressed if not bred often enough, and that's not fair.

His personality may well change for the worse as he matures, his wee will smell bad, and if he sprays he will need stud housing, rather than living with you as a constant companion. I would have him neutered, you can still show him if that's what you want to do, neuters often make the best show cats as they do not get as distracted by the presence of other cats.

If you're interested in breeding it is more practical to start out with a queen or two and build up that way, keeping your own stud later when you have built up to it, I don't think you can keep a boy happy by keeping him as a stud without regular planned matings.
post #3 of 16
http://www.cfa.org/breeds/profiles/devon.html

I'd read the CFA breed standard and look at the pictures. IMO he's a nice boy but not extreme enough to use in a breeding program. His ears are a little too tall and not wide enough. So unless he's used with an extreme girl with very wide ear set, you won't get quality cats from him.

Why does the breeder want to use him? For color? For lines? With his/her own cats? Would this be a one time breeding?


As far as if he will spray - that's a 50/50 chance. Usually if its the only male in the house you may luck out on a him not spraying. You cannot stop him if he starts - so he would have to be caged at some point. And males need to breed more then one or two females to keep them happy and healthy - so if you don't have much lined up, IMO its not worth keeping him an entire male.

If the breeder wants to use him once or twice with some of their girls, then maybe keep him entire, but neuter him after he's done breeding. Some males will get more aggressive when breeding, some don't.

I'd think long and hard about using him in a breeding program, particularly because he's not an excellant example of the breed. IMO only the top quality males and females should be used for breeding - not almost good.
post #4 of 16
You can always try to keep him intact. Studs can be super pets! I've met several of them. Of course there's a risk he'll spray, sometimes the spraying is managble but to often it's impossible to keep a sprating stud as a normal pet. If he becomes the very spraying type you can neuter him then. Most studs do stop spraying if they're neutered quick. Do you have any other cats? Other fertile cats, no matter gender, could stimulate him so spray.

As for his breeding qualities I leave that part to his breeder. There are so many other things than purely looks to think about.
post #5 of 16
True, but looks are pretty darn important - there are exceptions, but very few. The cat has to fit the standard pretty near perfect to be used - at least that's how good breeders go about things

Right now, his faults override the good (head and ears). I've been around enough Devons to know a good from a not so good one
post #6 of 16
It really does depend on the male. I dont know much about Devons so I cant say. My boy Caesar doesnt spray and lives with us within the house. We are however getting a second male Antony. While we have divided off the household territorys and each boy will get half the house, this may not work and if it doesnt we have plans for Stud enclosures for them.
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
True, but looks are pretty darn important - there are exceptions, but very few. The cat has to fit the standard pretty near perfect to be used - at least that's how good breeders go about things

Right now, his faults override the good (head and ears). I've been around enough Devons to know a good from a not so good one
Of course looks are important but the main thing is the combination. I've seen two honestly not good looking (seriously not good Devon Rexes) Devon Rexes produce Best in Show offspring.

Also remember this is a kitten and Devon Rexes, especially males, do take a very long time to develop. Basically all of the males go through a "really ugly period" when they're young. Sure, the ears will not get lower placed with age but this kitten has its advantages.
- Excellent coat and whiskers
- Very good whisker pads
- A nice stop, often you can't tell that by a front view (can't say anything about the chin or forehead by this picture)
- Nice broadness over the head and it probably will become better with age
- Perfect eye shape and placing
- Very appealling broad chest

The ears are his main problem, but a cat is so much more than that.

How good he is also depends on what standard you follow. The CFA standard gives to much of a sweet look for my taste. I breed by European standards (basically GCCF) which gives a more evil look.

I would like to see him when he's 1 year old.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your replies.

I really wanted to know what your experiences are/were in keeping an intact male in your home and would love to hear about anyone else's experiences

In saying "quite nice," I was trying to be polite and not brag, but he is stunning. Apparently his breeder and the breeder (whom are both long time breeders and showers) that she bought her stud from thinks he would be an asset to a Devon breeding program. When I had originally inquired about obtaining his breeding rights when he was much younger I was turned down. His breeder called me the night before his neuter appt and insisted I take a week to reconsider. I think if my family and I were not so attached to him, they would gladly buy him back for their own programs.

Here are a few different pics of him-


Here he is playing with one of potential mates if I decide to keep him intact, LOL-
post #9 of 16
I don't understand why the breeder didn't keep him, if he's so good. Having agreed to sell him to you as a pet who would be neutered, she seems to have had a bit of a turnaround - and not one that is good for you. If you keep him entire, apart from potential problems with spraying etc., you will have to allow him to mate sufficiently for him to not become frustrated. If you dont' have female cats for him to mate with, you will have to put him out to stud. Will the female cats come to you? Or will your boy be travelling all over to the females? Either way, I assume that's not the lifestyle you had planned when you bought him. I think it's rather cheeky of the breeder to change the goalposts like this. You bought him as a pet and planned to neuter him. I would continue to do that. If you think you could bear to part with him (and I'm guessing you wouldn't want to do that) you could offer him back to the breeder if she thinks he would be so good as part of a breeding programme.

I agree with Epona about starting with females if you want to breed. Starting with a male cat is an unusual way to get started and doesnt really involve you much.
post #10 of 16
He does look much better in the 2nd picture - what is the age difference? Cause in the first he really has too big of ears and set wrong, but in the 2nd picture its more of what you want.

I will agree with urban on this - why didn't the breeder keep him in a breeding program? Tho I will admit that because of my research in cornish and careful breeding, 90% of my kittens were show quality; even tho few were shown. There were a couple that would have been excellant in a breeding program, but I didn't have the buyers nor could I keep them for myself.

Looking back, I regret at least two of them being neutered - I wish I could have kept the boys and used them.

If the breeder really feels that its important for him to breed a few females, maybe do so; but what happens if he does and starts spraying and then after being neutered, is not the loving cat you wanted in the first place - what will you do?????
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol View Post
How good he is also depends on what standard you follow. The CFA standard gives to much of a sweet look for my taste. I breed by European standards (basically GCCF) which gives a more evil look.
So true, I much prefer the GCCF Devons - they just have such a naughty look about them. The set of the ears and eyes is different and they have much more of an evil pixie look to them!

To respond to the OP again - I was lucky with my Oriental Jacob - he was allowed to mature and used as a stud a) because he is very typey and carries the cinnamon gene which is rare and b) for continuation of a line - he was then neutered and came to live with me and he's never sprayed even though he has been mated and he came to me as an adult within a week of neutering, for which I am very thankful.

It was never intended for him to be a stud cat for long as he can't be shown because of an injury that affects his conformation (in all other ways he is perfect), and his breeder saw traits in him that were worth passing on before neutering him and making him a pet while he was still young.

If the intention is to mate him once or twice with his breeder's queens, if she has good reason for wanting him mated with her queens because he has traits that she likes and wants to continue, and has good reasons for doing so, then I don't see the harm - but I wouldn't look at it as a long-term thing. Devons mature young and he could still be bred and neutered by 12-15 months old like my Jacob, but I'd only consider it if he were really worth breeding from, and I'm not familiar with US registry standards only GCCF which are quite different so I can't really comment on his worthiness as a stud!
post #12 of 16
If you decide to keep him entire, be clear with the breeder that you will neuter him if he starts spraying! If she wants to use she should have a female ready for him. Don't put yourself in the situation where you keep a spraying male for someone else. A spraying male puts a lot of strain on the family.

Be very clear and put it all down on paper.
post #13 of 16
Good advice on "put it in writing" I should have mentioned that
post #14 of 16
I don't have any tips. I just wanted to say that I think your boy is adorable!
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by lillypug View Post

Here he is playing with one of potential mates if I decide to keep him intact, LOL-
So you are going to keep the male and the female and do all the breeding yourself? Where did this other kitten come from and is she of breeding quality?
post #16 of 16
Everyone keeps commenting on how strange it is that the breeder would ask the cat to be bred, but when I was young we had a similar situation. My mom's friend was a persian breeder and we got a calico persian from her. Well, right around the time our cat was 6 months the breeder's calico died and she called and asked if she could have our cat back for her breeding program, so I think there are circumstance that could change a breeders mind about a kitten. She offered us two male kittens for the calico. I think what lilypug is looking for is mostly what she could expect from having an intact male in the house. Spraying, behavior changes, etc and whether or not there are ways to remedy such things in order to keep him intact, if she chooses to do that.
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