Had no idea how time-consuming this breeding program can be. Or how expensive!
THE HIGH COST OF BREEDING
Article copyright Â© Sue Brown 1998
Pre-mating vet check up, worming & vaccination booster
Travel taking queen to stud (return fare).
Travel collecting queen from stud (return fare).
Premium food & conditioners for queen during pregnancy.
Possible complications at birth, e.g. caesarian, uterine inertia,
hysteria, milk failure, damaged/malformed kitten(s).
Kitten milk replacer for weak kittens/hand-rearing.
Common kitten ailments, e.g. sticky eyes, stomach upsets
(the latter can spread to all your cats and be very pernicious as well
as surprisingly expensive to eradicate).
Purchase and preparation of weaning foods for kittens at 3-5 weeks.
Extra, premium, food for queen during lactation (she will eat as much as
2 or 3 adult cats for more than a month).
Extra cat litter (all that extra food has to go somewhere!)
Feeding kittens from weaning-13 weeks (at 13 weeks, 4 kittens
eat about as much as 4 adult cats).
Even more extra cat litter for kittens (trays twice a day
from 6-13 weeks).
Extra cleaning - the household, not just the trays!
Breakages, e.g. ornaments, house-plants, torn curtains, upholstery
(all too common with Siamese kittens).
Having 5, 6 or more little monsters under your feet & ripping through
your home for 2 months. .
Toys for kittens.
Worming at 6, 9 & 12 weeks. 12-wk vet check & FeLV testing.
Keeping off-colour or small kittens for longer time.
Keeping kitten/s to honour new owners' vacations etc.
Refunds & taking kittens back if new owner changes mind.
Re-advertising cancelled or returned kittens.
Extra heating costs for kittens in cold weather.
Giving away or selling for less to special friends and relatives.
Not being able to go on vacation or stay over for a night anywhere
for for 5 months.
Being available for phone calls, visitors and enquirers.
Time spent handling, socialising & playing with kittens (every day).
Sleepless nights and frayed nerves while queen is calling
(every month or less between litters).
Annual subscriptions to cat associations & registering bodies.
Subscriptions to cat magazines.
Time off work for birthing and when cats are sick.
Annual vaccinations, testing & health checks for breeding queen
& your other cats.
Equipment, e.g. litter trays, carriers, cages, bowls, beds,
blankets, heat pads, scratching posts, cat trees.
ALL THIS IF YOU OWN JUST ONE BREEDING QUEEN!
and of course, that queen might have only one kitten in her litter.
If you also own a stud cat: Stud house and run, & its annual
maintenance. FeLV/FIV testing every 3 months.
Advertising stud services.
Responsibility of handling other people's queens (insurance too).
Being available at very short notice for stud services.
Extra time for "loving" a stud cat kept outside.
Not being able to board out stud cat if you wish to take a holiday.
If you go to cat shows: Subscriptions to more cat clubs.
Travel to meetings & symposiums.
Travel to shows as visitor.
Show catalogues & door entry fees.
Entry fees for shows when exhibiting.
Travelling to & from shows (can be very long distances).
Grooming and conditioning products.
Time off work to attend shows.
Show cages, drapes & furnishings.
Extra time for training & handling show cats.
Extra veterinary checkups before shows.