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Ethical breeding?

post #1 of 72
Thread Starter 
A friend of mine had aquired a sphynx, she had the intentions of breeding, but discovered she was allergic to the cat. Since she knew I liked hairless animals (I also have a Crested), she offered the cat to me.

She is asking if I'd be interested in breeding the cat. She had a litter before, and was apparantly a good mommy. I had no intentions of breeding, but I told my friend I'd do a little research and think on it.

I know more about what the guidelines are for responsibly breeding dogs.. earn titles to the names, health tests, etc. This is the first purebred cat I've ever owned, I dont know as much about cats when it comes to registration, showing, breeding, etc.. all my other cats are rescued "muggles"..

What health tests do cats need? Is the CH title as important with cats as it is with breeding dogs? Also I looked on the TICA website to look at the breed standard, and it mentioned outcrossing on the standard. Does that mean its acceptable to breed a cat back to certain other breeds? Would the kittens still be considered purebred? Can they be registered?

I will most likely spay.. but I am curious to hear what is considered ethical breeding for cats.
post #2 of 72
Tbh, and this is just my opinion, I would not breed on that basis. I think it's something that people do after a long time of research about their chosen breed, and a deep longing to do it. Did you get all the relevant papers for the cat, was it signed over to you (here there is a registration transfer slip that has to be signed and sent off with a fee to the registry) - if you don't have the paperwork then you will be unlikely to find anyone willing to provide a stud unless it's a backyard breeder, and you won't be able to register any kittens.

If you are not sure about it, if it is not something you've longed for, then my advice would be to have her spayed. Breeding is not without risk or heartbreak - I know someone who recently lost 2 kittens from a litter within the first couple of days after their birth (which is not an unusual or abnormal situation for breeders, it happens to the best most experienced breeders sometimes) and who spent a week in emotional pain crying and grieving for those babies, burying them in her garden. I also know breeders who have been through a lot of grief losing a queen due to pregnancy or birth complications. I know that sounds harsh, but it is the reality of breeding - yes there can be great joy, but also great tragedy, pregnancy complications and delivery can be a significant health risk, even for the healthiest of cats - and you should take into consideration whether you would be able to survive that event when deciding.

If you do not absolutely have your heart set on breeding, if it is not your lifelong dream, if you don't have any plans on how to improve the breed, then my opinion is that you should get your lovely girl spayed, enjoy her as a pet, and show her in neuter classes if you want to go to shows.
post #3 of 72
Most breeders do NOT hand over breeding cats to novices. I don't know how your friend got an unspayed Sphynx, but if you really want to breed her, then she should be shown to assess the quality first.

Unless you have experience you don't just outcross. That is left to those that really are dedicated to the breed and need to outcross. Cats should be show quality before they are bred. Some cats produce top kittens without being in the show ring for various reasons. Females in heat tend to drop weight and its difficult to keep showing to Grand them when they want to breed.

If you are not interested in improving the breed and becoming a Sphynx breeder and show the cats, then just spay her now.
post #4 of 72
Sphynx can be outcrossed with american shorthair.
You need hcm scans.
You also need to be careful when sphnx have surgery.
Certain Anesthesias should not be used.

Most breeders will not let a person use their cats to breed unless the person knows alot.Do you know what breeder the cat came from?
post #5 of 72
Thread Starter 
as I understand, the original owner had passed away.. the owner's friend or sister got the cat by default, but travelled often, so she couldnt keep the cat.. and my friend got the cat from her..

She is a tad bit underweight at the moment.. I figured stress from loosing her owner and being shuffled around. I dont know when she had her kittens, but I dont think it was very long ago, her teats look a little enlarged compared to my spayed cats.. they could be swollen because she is coming into heat again tho.

I havent gotton the papers yet, but if I was interested in breeding, I can aquire them... the papers were not passed along to me because I was not interested in breeding.

Im thinking she may be too small anyways, she's around 5 pounds maybe, even putting proper weight back on, she's still a tiny cat.

I am leaning more towards spay.. but I did tell my friend that I'd research and think on it.
post #6 of 72
Thread Starter 
I dont know which breeder she came from.

Thanks for the heads up on the problems with anathesias.. I will have to do some research on that before I arrange for a spay then.
post #7 of 72
Would you lie to join the sphynx group I am in?
They will have aswers for you.
The bad Anesthesia is keta not sure hpw to spell it.
That sphynx is way underweight.
My Cleo weighs more then that and she is only 6 months.
She was fixed in Nov.
post #8 of 72
Originally Posted by mews2much View Post
Would you lie to join the sphynx group I am in?
They will have aswers for you.
The bad Anesthesia is keta not sure hpw to spell it.
That sphynx is way underweight.
My Cleo weighs more then that and she is only 6 months.
She was fixed in Nov.
Ketamine based anaesthetics - Siamese and other colourpoints can also have problems with certain anaesthetics, the faulty enzyme that causes colourpoint markings instead of solid coat colour is the same enzyme that helps clear that drug from their system - so they can react badly to it and not come out of it as quickly as they should so there is a higher risk.
post #9 of 72
Thread Starter 
Yes, I was actually trying to find a forum that was more about the particular breed.

Her ribs are not showing, so she's not horribly underweight, but you can see her hip bones too easily, and she doesnt have that belly pooch that the breed is suppossed to have.

I want her up to a healthy weight before I spay. Im just not comfortable putting an underweight animal thru surgury unless necessary. All the other pets in this house are snipped, so there's no risk of her getting pregnant.
post #10 of 72
Here is a link to the group.
You can show a fixed cat also.
I am showing Cleo.
post #11 of 72
If she needs to gain weight, then you can mix adult food with kitten food which has more calories.

Bear in mind that many cats you may see could be overweight, and also have fur covering up their normal shape - it is normal to be able to feel the last couple of ribs nearest the stomach, feel the spine under the skin, and the same for the upwards projections of the pelvis will be visible in a slender, healthy, hairless cat. If you can't see the ribs then that sounds fine. Has she been to the vet yet for a checkup? They will be able to advise about the correct weight and body shape.

I always worry a bit that mine are underweight, but it's just because I see so many obese cats that it is easy to forget that they are supposed to be lean muscular predators!
post #12 of 72
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the link.

I knew you could show a fixed cat. If Im not going to breed, I probably wont get invovled in that tho.. who knows, I may decide later to take her to one or two shows tho for the fun of it.

I wish they had alter classes for dog shows, I'd love to stack my Fred up against other Cresteds... I bought him from N'Co as a pet, so he's neutered.. but I think he's a very nice example of the breed.
post #13 of 72
She how Cleo looks.
post #14 of 72
Thread Starter 
She was shipped up to my friend by air less than 2 weeks ago, so she has recently seen a vet to get her health certificate. My own vet has not yet seen her, as I just got her yesterday.

True that I am used to looking at hairy cats.. and its harder to determine what a healthy weight is based on that.

She's just so tiny and petite tho, expecially compared to my other cats.. Bo Jangles is probably about 15 pds! I was abit surprised that she was used for breeding.
post #15 of 72
Thread Starter 
Cleo has that little belly "pooch"..

Bastet does not have that, her little belly is tight and tucked in
post #16 of 72
Cleo is the way they should be.
Do ou ahve any pics of her.
You can see cleos spay scar in the picture also.
She gets very oily also.
Did they tell you how to care for a sphynx?
post #17 of 72
Originally Posted by mews2much View Post
She how Cleo looks.
Oh that is so cute, I just want to tickle that tummy!

I know that mine look like that under the fur, with ultra-shorthairs you can see the belly pad a bit because their fur is more sparse on the undercarriage than it is on top.

If your cat is skinnier than that then it's not necessarily unhealthy, but I would suggest just let her eat what she wants for the moment and give her a bit of kitten food but watch out for her putting on too much weight because it is harder to lose it than gain it (and don't I know it!).

How long ago did she have a litter? It does take a while to get back into condition after giving birth and nursing, queens often have a bit of a 'hollow and tired' look afterwards, in which case kitten food will help her gain a bit and get back into good condition.
post #18 of 72
Th breeder cleo came from told me to use Royal Canin Kitten food.
Maybe you can use that.
post #19 of 72
Thread Starter 
I did post a few pics under the topic where I introduced myself..

I did a little reading on sphynx care before.. I know they need bathed more often because they get oily and the skin can sometimes get "sticky".. eyes, ears and nails need cleaned daily too.. expecially the eyes because of the lack of eye lashes.
post #20 of 72
They gt alot of oil in their ears.
Some vets think they have ear mites when its oil.
post #21 of 72
I'm so curious, I know absolutely nothing about breeding, but why in the world would you need papers for a breed such as a sphynx? Isn't it clearly obvious whether the cat is a sphynx?? I mean, even I would recognize a sphynx. Does the government regulate breeders to make sure they are not making the cats commit incest and mess up the gene pool??? Is that a reason?? It would be nice if the government did that.
post #22 of 72
Thread Starter 
We do free-feed the cats here, so she has access to get what she wants.. Tabbi is abit overweight because of it... she has lost some tho since we moved into the house.. I went thru a divorce a few years ago and moved in with my parents, and she gained weight then... she's been happier here, playing with the other cats and more active. Too bad we cant do fat transplants.. I'd give Tabbi's extra flab to Bastet LOL.

Ive been feeding her abit extra to add to the dry kibble to encourage her to eat more.. some canned food, and a few extra treats. I didnt think of using kitten food.. next time I go to the store I will get some.
post #23 of 72
Thread Starter 
I think papers are more to track pedigrees than to proove if the animal is a purebred.

Even with dogs, a Crested is obviously a Crested, a German Shepherd is obviously a german shepherd.. but using a registry service is a means of accuratly keeping track of pedigrees and parentage. Its important to research the pedigree when breeding to understand flaws and genetics in the animal's background.
post #24 of 72
I can trace Cleos papers way back and ordered the 5th generation from Tica.
Papers prove they are purebreds.
post #25 of 72
Thread Starter 
I just got a pic of her belly.. you can see what I mean.

I dont know when she had her kittens. Im told she's about 2 years old.. I dont think it was very long ago because her nipples are still abit enlarged, but that could also be because she's in heat.

post #26 of 72
Originally Posted by ut0pia View Post
I'm so curious, I know absolutely nothing about breeding, but why in the world would you need papers for a breed such as a sphynx? Isn't it clearly obvious whether the cat is a sphynx?? I mean, even I would recognize a sphynx. Does the government regulate breeders to make sure they are not making the cats commit incest and mess up the gene pool??? Is that a reason?? It would be nice if the government did that.
The papers are needed to register the kittens, or to enter in shows. If you cannot register the kittens then you can't sell them as pedigree kittens, because there is no pedigree (the going rate for a non-pedigree kitten is the same as your local cat-rescue adoption fee for a stray).

The papers are needed if you want to find a stud, because no ethical breeder will agree to their stud being bred to a queen without breeding rights - those rights are detailed in the papers.

How do you know that you're not about to breed your cat to its brother and potentially end up with health problems? The papers and pedigree.

How do you decide on whether you want to concentrate on dilutes, tabbies, colourpoint, etc - you won't know unless you have the pedigree.

People do not generally breed cats with the intention of giving their little girl and boy kittens away to be bred by other people without their consent. In the UK with the GCCF, if a breeder does not register a kitten on what is called the "active register" then the kittens it produces can NEVER be registered or shown, and you can never sell kittens to someone at the usual price for the breed unless you are operating a scam or deception (which could land you in court being sued!)

People will not let you bring your queen to their stud unless you have papers, and proof of negative test results for FIV and FeLV (in the UK stud owners insist on that test being done and results obtained within the 24 hours before taking your queen to stud) - you cannot do this without the correct papers, no good breeder will let an unpapered queen breed with their stud, as their name and the reputation of their cattery is at stake.

Sphynx are not the only hairless cat - it's a mutated gene that has a small chance of happening at any time, anywhere, in any litter, in any breed, or in a moggy. A hairless cat is not necessarily a sphynx (and sphynx were a breed originating from a random hairless moggy after all, weren't they?!) So yes you do need papers to prove your hairless cat is a pedigree sphynx.
post #27 of 72
Thread Starter 
sphynx are not the only hairless cat.. there is also the peterbald.

Yes the breed did originate from some hairless kittens that appeared in a litter from a moggy in Canada.
post #28 of 72
Just to say I realised my last post might have come across as if I were a bit cross, but that was not my intention at all, I have problems judging tone sometimes so if I came across badly or came on too strong please forgive me!

Looking at the belly of your lovely girl I would say she is a little skinny but probably still gaining condition after her last litter - nothing to worry about, just plenty of good quality food and at least a years rest from looking after little'uns
post #29 of 72
She is thin.
Peterbalds are pretty cool.
My next cat will be a peterbald,sphynx or rex.
I will get one after I show cleo a few times.
post #30 of 72
Well, are cats that were randomly born hairless able to produce hairless kittens if bred with a sphynx or does that happen after many many generations of selective breeding? The only point from all that, that I get is it's important that kittens aren't bred to their siblings or relatives...All the other registering and showing stuff seems like human silliness to me lol. That's why I'd never get a purebred cat, it just seems silly to me to breed selectively in order to change the features of what evolution itself created. But then again, so many animals are a product of human selective breeding, like all farm animals. Anyway I'm digressing and I don't mean to hijack the thread..
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