We have talked a lot about spotting a bad cat breeder. In the vast majority of cases, it is very obvious why a particular breeder is considered "bad". There are pictures of sick cats, cats that were reserved (money was exchanged), but never delivered, cats sold into breeding programs with hidden defects or defects never disclosed, etc. In these instances it is easy to see why a particular breeder is considered "bad". In other cases it is not that easy to come to this conclusion. Ultimately, how a breeder handles a transaction disagreements will show if they are a good breeder or perhaps one that is lacking in that department.
We recently came across a post to our Facebook page where a newbie breeder shared her experience with what appears to be a very well know and experienced breeder.
Within minutes of this post appearing on our Facebook feed, we were contacted by a person who claimed that she was working for the breeder who sold these ill fated kittens. After asking for proof of her assertion that the breeder did not do anything wrong, the conversation quickly disintegrated. This person was told that the post would be taken down in the event the accuser could not provide proof of her allegations. It became clear that the expectation was an immediate deletion of said post ...... or else."
This was quickly followed by the breeder contacting us and demanding that we are to take down the offensive post immediately........or else. In her wake came a contingent of what appear to be breeder friends who did not add anything to the conversation, but rather tooted into the same horn up to and including the use of profanity as well as threats and efforts to intimidate as well as insinuation that we "investigate" people for monetary gain.
So how does this correlate to "good" versus "bad" breeder? A bad breeder is not always recognized that easily. They may be very well known, respected and even admired by many. Among all these posts there is little in the way of facts. The following facts are available:
- A newbie breeder bought three kittens for breeding from a very experienced breeder (17 years by her own account). The price paid was 2000 GBP (Great British Pound) which is roughly $3,250.
- Kittens arrived with upper respiratory infections and fleas.
- Two kittens never got well, continued to decline and were euthanized due to suspected FIP. No necropsy was performed.
- The originating breeder is not taking any responsibility, but rather blames the buyer for the demise of these kittens.
A quick and dirty search on Facebook showed this particular breeder involved in spats on another "bad breeder" type of page that is at best a breeder bashing forum with little to no proof required and poorly moderated.
So how does all of this make this particular breeder "bad"? Well, perhaps not bad as in animal abusive, neglectful or scamming. At no point has this breeder shown any compassion for the buyer. At no point has the breeder even tried to understand the tremendous upset losing kittens to FIP causes. The breeder immediately went into "preservation mode", gathered the troops and started to attack to "save her reputation" and placing the blame square on the buyer.
Note: FIP has a very strong genetic component that leaves affected kittens with an incompetent immune system. This is believed to be caused by indiscriminate inbreeding. This breeder claims to have a total outcross program (meaning no relations) as she imports street cats from Thailand. It is common knowledge that feral cat populations are at a very high risk for FIP as these cats procreate without any regards to relations, such as full litter mate matings or father to daughter, etc.
So you see - not every bad breeder is identified by a trail of sick cats sold out of the back of a pick up truck. A bad breeder is created by their very own choices how to handle adverse situation.