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Wormer, shots and flea control

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
So, I am wondering how breeders keep their costs down to a manageable level. I just got back from the vets last night and I am pretty shocked at the costs incurred. For those who may be interested in breeding, I really need to emphasize that it is not a profitable enterprise

The first $700 in vet costs was not regular, and resulted from Skylark retaining one kitten. Then the kittens developed diarrhea and had to be on antibiotics.

My first regular vet check for the kittens was per kitten:

$30 vaccine
$50 exam fee ($78 regular)
$15 wormer

Their second vet check was:

$30 vaccine
$50 exam
$15 Revolution

Now, is it completely necessary for a complete exam for the second vet check? They had seen the kittens 4 weeks prior and they were obviously healthy and thriving. Why subject the poor little things to another temperature reading.

I have read online and heard from other breeders that they do their own exams and vaccines. They just get the rabies shot done by a licensed vet if they do it.
post #2 of 20
I'm squeemish when it comes to needles, so I would rather take kittens/cats in for shots instead of doing it at home.

I was lucky regarding fleas/worming. My kittens were tested twice for worms (negative) and so never needed to be wormed. Mom was tested periodically and never had them so after a few litters, the kittens were tested once and cleared for worms. Not ALL kittens have worms. If mom is negative and never goes outside, then the chances are very slim the kittens will have worms.

Fleas - luckily I never had a problem with that, so didn't need the expense of treatment.

I don't remember the costs, but basically they were cost of the vet exam (group - not individual - each visit), check for worms and given shots at 8, 12, and 16 weeks. Rabies was given at 16 weeks. At the time I was breeding I didn't have the extra expense of the neuter/spay like is common now. My kittens were done at 6-8 months according to the contract. I never had a problem with someone not doing it.
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
How do people deal with vet's insistence that ALL kittens have worms. And ALL cats have worms and they pass them to their babies. I can see that if there is an outside cat in the mix, but all of my cats are indoor, and all of the purebred ones come from multiple generations of indoor cats. My one stray cat has no contact with the kittens/female cats, as he lives in the enclosure with my stud male to keep him company.

Do all breeders have fecal worm tests done on their breeding cats? Even if they did, my vet insists that worms will hide in the muscle and not show on tests.

I agree that the shot idea makes me squeamish, but I think I could get used to it. My super girly-girl sister manages to do 2 insulin shots a day on her cat.
post #4 of 20
If you've provided a sample or two of the stool from the kittens and its negative, you can tell the vet that NO I don't need the kittens treated for worms. They can't treat without your permission.

I would just simply tell your vet "no, do not treat for worms - they don't have them". I tell them that I'm aware of what worms look like and because they are 100% indoor and mom is negative, then there is no reason to give them wormers. If I have a problem with worms, I'll bring them in for you to treat."
post #5 of 20
Thread Starter 
I guess I need to develop my stand-up-to-vets technique.
post #6 of 20
I'll worm at home, the kittens will get their health check, first vax, microchipped and desexed at 10 weeks. First vax at 10 weeks so they only require a 2nd kitten booster then their yearly shot.

Each kitten will have approx. $200-300 of vet care in them - even with my breeders discount.

Many breeders vax at home, however it's illegal in my state so I cannot.

My vet has many breeders on his books, so is quite knowledgeable about that side of things (why I drive over 45 minutes to see him). I was well aware of the costs going in, and also chose a breed with higher setup costs - but it's the breed I chose.....
post #7 of 20
Dont be afraid to say no to the vet.
I have done it before.
I have given shots to puppies before and its nothing to be scared of doing.
I give my old cat fluids with a 18 g needle all the time.
I do not know why your vet charges for office visits just to give shots.
Ask for a tech visit and they will not charge for a exam.
I have talked about breeding in 2 years and have ask about prices.
post #8 of 20
It costs on average $500 to $600 per kitten to raise it to the age of 3 months if you are doing things correctly.

Get used to it.

I would suggest you ask your Vet to think about giving you a breeder discount. Many will do this, due to volume of business you bring in.
It's normally 10% off.
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai Bengals View Post

Get used to it.
I wasn't implying that I can't manage this - I am just asking for advice - since this is the cat breeding section of TCS.

The $50 exam fee IS the breeder/litter reduced price. That's why I listed $78 exam fee beside it. My concern was, why do they need to do a complete exam just to give the second set of boosters. I was informed by the vet that this is standard. I have talked to breeders who do their own shots and are experienced enough to not find a full exam necessary on every kitten. I was simply asking if others on this board do the same thing. Or if not, why.
post #10 of 20
It IS standard with most vets.

Welcome to breeding cats.

It's hot in the kitchen isn't it?

You asked for advice and I gave you a fact, expect to invest $500 to $600 per kitten before they leave for their new homes.

Don't know why you're getting on edge.

If you're comfortable selling a kitten on contract with you doing all the "exams and shots" without a diploma to back up your contract and skills, so be it.
I am comfortable giving kitten shots, I have done it many many times, but I won't sell a kitten without a Vet backing up my claims that it's healthy and had the appropriate age specific vaccines.
post #11 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai Bengals View Post

It's hot in the kitchen isn't it?
Who is on edge? Again, simply asking for advice to see if it compares to the advice I have been given in person.

I asked my vet today if they will do just the shots for the second set, instead of another full exam, and was told no. They won't sign off on shots unless they have physically examined the cat for possible defects. This is just one vet, possibly others in my area would do differently.

My original question was in regards to the SECOND set of shots.. since they had already undergone a complete vet exam while getting their first shots. It seemed odd that 4 weeks later they would need another complete exam, and not simply a visit to get their shots done.

I am not comfortable in assessing whether they are completely healthy, nope, and I have no issues with have an exam done for the first set of shots.
post #12 of 20
Well if they are that insistant, maybe only give shots at 10 weeks and then again at 14 weeks and have them spayed/neutered at that time. I've taken older kittens in and they didn't give them 3 shots - only set of 2 shots.
post #13 of 20
Thread Starter 
Just as a FYI, I plan to charge $850 for a pet-quality kitten. I cover worming, 2 sets of shots, and the spay/neuter operation ($200). That is around $400 per kitten, but of course that is not including the original costs of the breeding pair, vet checks on the queen, possible x-rays prior to birth, premium quality cat/kitten food, travel to cat shows, entry fees, advertising for my cattery, and other such stuff.

I understand all this, and understood prior to beginning my voyage. I was simply asking for tips and advice from experienced breeders.
post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sohni View Post
I understand all this, and understood prior to beginning my voyage. I was simply asking for tips and advice from experienced breeders.
Good, but it seems you don't like or want my advice and I have been breeding cats for more than 20 years. When you ask for advice, you don't have to take it. You just read or listen and take what works for you. You don't complain about what advice is given.

One of the things that really bugs me about new breeders is when they ask for advice or opinions and then get offended or defensive when the advice or opinions don't correspond to what they wanted or expected to hear.

If you want to hear the truth, ask. If not, don't ask.
post #15 of 20
I am not sure about the worming, or the vet fees, I agree with you that a visit shouldn't be charged if only for the second set of shots a few weeks after a complete visit... but... I never had kittens in the US, so I don't know. As far as the flea meds, I get mine online, saving a bunch - Revolution for Lucky, Advantage Multi for Bugsy...
post #16 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for your replies. I will also talk to my mentor at the show this weekend and see how she handles the costs.
post #17 of 20
I don't think your vet should be charging you for an exam each kitten. My Vet (she's a dear friend too!) doesn't charge vet exam fees - just for the vaccination which is NZ$42 a kitten (probably includes a small vets fee too). My kittens only get 1 vaccination and then it's off to their new homes about a week later. All my kittens get wormed twice and "advantaged" once before they leave.
post #18 of 20
My vet usually charges me a fee for the whole litter if I bring them in to be seen. The kitten's files are kept under their mother's. My vet knows I handle the little things on my own, but I'm there in a flash once something complicated comes up. There is no reason for them to be charging you so much; in my opinion, they're not trying to foster a long-term relationship with you as a customer.

You would do very well to take your business elsewhere. Nobody ethical ever expects breeding to be a money making enterprise, but you have to spend your dollars carefully because you'll need them when a real emergency occurs--and a real emergency WILL occur, you can count on that!

You show your cats as much as possible, and you make an effort to be at the shows most important to your breed, even if they are on the other side of the North American continent. You're doing everything right, and it takes time to learn what you can and cannot do on your own. Don't be afraid to ask for opinions, and take them only as that--opinions. Every breeder does everything a little bit differently, and you need to decide on not only what you feel comfortable doing, but what is going to allow you to remain a breeder in the long run.
post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sohni View Post
I asked my vet today if they will do just the shots for the second set, instead of another full exam, and was told no. They won't sign off on shots unless they have physically examined the cat for possible defects. This is just one vet, possibly others in my area would do differently.

My original question was in regards to the SECOND set of shots.. since they had already undergone a complete vet exam while getting their first shots. It seemed odd that 4 weeks later they would need another complete exam, and not simply a visit to get their shots done.

I am not comfortable in assessing whether they are completely healthy, nope, and I have no issues with have an exam done for the first set of shots.
Then you might want to develop a relationship with a different vet. Some will happily work with you. Most breeders I know have a close and good relationship with their vet and the staff. And yes, there is a discount for breeders, which you are getting
Also, if that exam fee is a large concern, you can always take your kittens to vaccination clinics. Some vets waive the office visit fee and or offer vaccinations and other preventative care at reduced rates.

The second exam fee makes since to me, that is because a lot can change with kittens in 4 weeks. That is pretty much a little under half of their life on earth if you are taking them for another check at 3 months old. But like I said, you can probably find another vet that would work with you and waive the fee, but also go ahead and check them over too.
Also, you can't tell if they have worms in every case just by looking at them or looking with your naked eye at their feces, they will appear healthy, you have to have a fecal to see which types of parasites they possibly have so you can treat for those specific parasites. I think it is great of you to take care of all of this for the kitten buyer, offering a fully vetted vet certified healthy kitten at the time of sale.

When it come to flea control, I don't see personally why that is needed if the cat is 100 percent indoors and you don't have other animals coming in and out. Less chemicals, the better IMO. I have a Sphynx and the breeder advised me not to apply chemicals.
post #20 of 20
Hi Sohni,

When I moved from AK it took 6 vets to find the right one. And now I drive almost 45 minutes to see him and her. They are excellent, know breeding (dog breeders, horse handlers and former Persian cat breeders) and work with other breeders.
Your best bet is to ask other breeders and I did. I get my shots and health certificate done with one vet and early spay neuter done at another almost an hour away. My vet doesn't do early speuter but the other one does and has been for 25 years. I appreciate my vets honesty that its not their expertise.

Now some of the reasons I chose to walk away from the other 5 vets: comments ranging from your a breeder with the glare and a lecture on how I shouldn't be breeding, when they don't know me, my cats or my practices (I interview a vet prior to even bringing a cat to make sure they are practicing isolation of sick incoming animals).

When they treat me like I don't know what I am talking about or do a treatment behind my back. (its happened to me 2 times now). OR when they try and push me out the door quickly or my cats don't like them OR they don't let me see the procedures being done if I request (1 of my girls doesn't do well apart from me).

What I do with kitten treatment and costs at current vet (higher than some of the others but a vet that isn't out to gouge you and knows the costs of breeding and how to handle reproductive problems without lets just fix it):

lst shots, group fee, which breaks down to 65 per kitten. Fecal 15 dollars and dewormer if needed 10 dollars. Havent had a flea issue and deflea is poison so I don't prefer to use it on kittens so young. this is 8 weeks.

2nd shots 12 weeks, 46 per kitten breakdown and if not getting fixed (going into breeding) or not shipping, health certificate is done and printed out. If I need an additional health certificate its 41 dollars.

spay and neuter is done by the other vet between 10 and 16 weeks depending on the kitten (weight, health ect) and gender. They are kept overnight and recieve rabies the following day. 85 for males and 130 for females.

So they go home with the first years vet work done. dewormed, 2 sets of shots and spayed or neutered. I recommend pet buyers take their kittens to the vet within 72 hours for a checkup and when they do, there is a discount.
I figure at this stage they have found a vet, kitten has a second exam of good health and we are on our way. Some have also found out they don't like the vet and before an emergency happens, best to have a good relationship with the vet.

Cats aren't dogs, and as there aren't near as many cat breeders as dogs and their needs are different, and some vets have never handled a breeder (they don't know how much this does cost) move on if they won't work with you. In the words of one vet who passed my interview and I took a cat into see, you are going to sell the kittens for lots of money so why not" in exact verbage about extra unneeded treatments and surprise wanting to charge each kitten the 4 dollar office charge followed by if I can't afford it then why breed. I reminded this vet that yes I sell the kittens but there is far more than vet work involved. I show, I buy the best cats I can find including imports and its not a cheap hobby. I looked at her and said don't I wish I could make the 10,000 plus I am down back, not to mention cats aren't dogs again, the more you get, the higher vet bills climb due to stress.
Daisy
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