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So I''ve been researching cat breeders...and kittens are expensive!

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cmarie

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Hi all,

This thread has been very interesting to read, because I am allergic to cats but in love with them. I have been getting allergy shots since December in an attempt to reduce or eliminate my reaction, plus I visited a Siberian cattery last fall. The breeder brought a cat out to my car and I petted it for a while and had no reaction, so then I tried going into the house (where she had many more cats living) and of course started sneezing.

After this experience, I had an appointment with an allergist, and I asked him point-blank, is it worth spending more money on a cat that''s supposed to have lower levels of allergens? and he said no, if you''ve had trouble with cats in the past then you''ll have trouble with cats in the future. (This was all before I started getting shots.) So this was very disappointing, and I wonder how people can say they have less of a reaction to these cats and yet a professional will not acknowledge this possibility.

If there is some truth to Siberians being less of a problem, then maybe getting shots AND a Siberian would be best for me, but I can only spend so much money on pet-related expenses (since both my husband and I are students right now). I am hoping to have some sort of follow-up appointment since it has been a few months since I started the shots, and then I can ask about getting a normal cat and possibly go from there. Anyway, I''d appreciate hearing your thoughts on this. My hope is that with enough shots/time, I will be able to withstand owning a regular cat from a shelter.
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/13/2009 11:17:29 AM
Author: Lynn B
Date: 3/12/2009 6:45:56 PM

Author: Brown.Eyed.Girl



Aw Lynn, I totally want a Ragdoll! That thread has the most adorable pics! Grr allergies...

I know, I know!!! Aren''t they awesome?! I just feel like I have completely, 100%, found ''my breed''... and I can''t imagine my home -- or my life -- EVER, without a Raggie in it.


Thank you for the sweet words. I will give Boo chinny skritches from you!
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Aw yes, give him some chin skritches from me! He''s a cutie - now you have me rethinking the whole hypoallergenic breed thing - maybe I should just suck it up, take allergy meds and get a Raggie
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Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/13/2009 12:36:27 PM
Author: cmarie
Hi all,


This thread has been very interesting to read, because I am allergic to cats but in love with them. I have been getting allergy shots since December in an attempt to reduce or eliminate my reaction, plus I visited a Siberian cattery last fall. The breeder brought a cat out to my car and I petted it for a while and had no reaction, so then I tried going into the house (where she had many more cats living) and of course started sneezing.


After this experience, I had an appointment with an allergist, and I asked him point-blank, is it worth spending more money on a cat that''s supposed to have lower levels of allergens? and he said no, if you''ve had trouble with cats in the past then you''ll have trouble with cats in the future. (This was all before I started getting shots.) So this was very disappointing, and I wonder how people can say they have less of a reaction to these cats and yet a professional will not acknowledge this possibility.


If there is some truth to Siberians being less of a problem, then maybe getting shots AND a Siberian would be best for me, but I can only spend so much money on pet-related expenses (since both my husband and I are students right now). I am hoping to have some sort of follow-up appointment since it has been a few months since I started the shots, and then I can ask about getting a normal cat and possibly go from there. Anyway, I''d appreciate hearing your thoughts on this. My hope is that with enough shots/time, I will be able to withstand owning a regular cat from a shelter.

Aw Cmarie, I hope the allergy shots and Siberian works out! Please come back and let us know how it works out. What made you decide on Siberians in particular, other than the hypoallergenic qualities? What cattery did you visit?

It might be doable since you said you were fine with one cat - plus if you do end up building up a tolerance to your cat, you''ll get better. But it sounds like a tough situation.
 

cmarie

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The hypoallergenic qualities were really the only reason I was interested in Siberians. But I probably can''t afford both shots and a really expensive cat. Originally I went to Cica Cattery in Indianapolis. It was a fun experience, but I just don''t know what to make of what my allergist said. I understand that no cat is allergen-free, but wouldn''t it be better to have a cat that produced less?

Anyway, as my shots continue, I can try hanging out with different cats to see which ones are the best. Like I said, I am planning to schedule an appointment soon to get some advice.
 

Pandora II

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My parents breed Siamese for years - they never advertised, they didn''t have to as word got round and people would phone up. They only sold the kittens to people that they had pre-vetted and who had been to see the kittens on more than one occasion.

I can definitely say that they never made any money from it. A Siamese kitten shouldn''t leave it''s mother before 14 weeks or they become very neurotic, by that age they have eaten a lot of food, had two sets of vaccinations - add registration fees, stud fees and all the veterinary care plus the vaccines the mother cat has to have to be allowed to mate with the stud cat and it''s a pretty big cost and that is before you factor in the time.

Having been left one weekend with 6 nine-week-old kittens I was ready to give the whole lot away just for some peace and quiet!

So $800 doesn''t sound that excessive to me.


My husband has bad cat allergies and Siamese set him off pretty badly - I''ve never heard of them being considered as good for allergies. I''m trying to find someone with Sphynx cats that we can try out - but since it''s the saliva not the hair, it probably won''t make any difference. You can''t get the shots in the UK anymore as they have been deemed too dangerous - even the major allergy centres in London won''t do them...


I also would never have a Siamese unless I worked from home - they''re more like dogs than cats and need serious amounts of attention - they can be very destructive if bored (expert wall-paper stripping machines
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AmberGretchen

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cmarie - I think that what pandora said about the saliva may be part of your allergist''s reasoning. Unlike less allergenic dog breeds, which have hair instead of fur (i.e. poodles, schnauzers), no cat has hair, they all have fur (as far as I know). And it is the saliva you respond to - specifically, enzymes in the saliva are what people are allergic to. Which is why it is a fallacy that hairless cats like the Sphynx are non-allergenic.

I think your best bet is to finish up your course of shots, and then try hanging around some cats - maybe at a friend''s house or whatever, or at your local shelter, and see how you do. Keep in mind that many people do become tolerized to their own animals'' specific allergens - this is what happened to my husband. It actually makes great sense - the whole principal of allergy shots is to make your immune system non-responsive to the allergen (that it shouldn''t be responding to in the first place) by giving it frequent, low doses, which is basically what happens when you live with a pet.

Its also been my experience (confirmed by an allergy/immuno doc who works in my lab) that people who have more mild symptoms (i.e. itchy/watery eyes, but no breathing obstruction or underlying asthma or anything like that) tend to respond better to treatment with allergy meds and also tend to tolerize better to cat or dog allergens over time.

Anyway, take that for what its - not a true medical opinion obviously, but another piece of info to consider.
 

AmberGretchen

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Date: 3/13/2009 8:05:42 PM
Author: innerkitten
Our family friends had a siamese catch that would fetch like a dog. Very cute.

That is SUPER cute. Our orange tabby used to do that - sadly, not any more, I''m not sure why she stopped, but it was so adorable when she did it
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Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/13/2009 7:25:29 PM
Author: cmarie
The hypoallergenic qualities were really the only reason I was interested in Siberians. But I probably can''t afford both shots and a really expensive cat. Originally I went to Cica Cattery in Indianapolis. It was a fun experience, but I just don''t know what to make of what my allergist said. I understand that no cat is allergen-free, but wouldn''t it be better to have a cat that produced less?


Anyway, as my shots continue, I can try hanging out with different cats to see which ones are the best. Like I said, I am planning to schedule an appointment soon to get some advice.

It does seem like common sense that if you suffer from allergies, you''ll want to minimize the amount of allergens floating around - you''ll still react, but it seems to me that quantity would affect how much and how severely you react. But then again, I''m not an allergist
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It would be great though if it didn''t matter - you''d have so many more options (and cheaper short-term adoption options!). Plus you could rescue a kitty.
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/13/2009 7:50:50 PM
Author: Pandora II
My parents breed Siamese for years - they never advertised, they didn''t have to as word got round and people would phone up. They only sold the kittens to people that they had pre-vetted and who had been to see the kittens on more than one occasion.


I can definitely say that they never made any money from it. A Siamese kitten shouldn''t leave it''s mother before 14 weeks or they become very neurotic, by that age they have eaten a lot of food, had two sets of vaccinations - add registration fees, stud fees and all the veterinary care plus the vaccines the mother cat has to have to be allowed to mate with the stud cat and it''s a pretty big cost and that is before you factor in the time.


Having been left one weekend with 6 nine-week-old kittens I was ready to give the whole lot away just for some peace and quiet!


So $800 doesn''t sound that excessive to me.



My husband has bad cat allergies and Siamese set him off pretty badly - I''ve never heard of them being considered as good for allergies. I''m trying to find someone with Sphynx cats that we can try out - but since it''s the saliva not the hair, it probably won''t make any difference. You can''t get the shots in the UK anymore as they have been deemed too dangerous - even the major allergy centres in London won''t do them...



I also would never have a Siamese unless I worked from home - they''re more like dogs than cats and need serious amounts of attention - they can be very destructive if bored (expert wall-paper stripping machines
9.gif

I bet that was one fun weekend, with the six kittens! I''m sure they were adorable though!

Yeah, I''m finding out that $800 is actually on the low end for registered purebred Siberians (or any purebred breed that''s not super common, it seems). I''ve definitely seen higher, and considering the health guarantee, testing, etc., it does make sense why the fee is that high (relatively speaking of course). I did read a bit about Siamese - I think Balinese were a bit better in terms of being left alone? But still neither the best choice if you''re not at home that often - I read that Russian Blues were actually really good if you do have to work longer hours since they tend to be much more independent. Right now I''m just so attracted to Siberians as a breed, and want to see what some catteries I''ve contacted say.

Hey, question for all of you ladies - so does the fur sample testing actually work?? (a few catteries have things on their websites saying for a $15-$25 fee they''ll send you a fur sample that you can use to test your allergies)
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/13/2009 8:05:42 PM
Author: innerkitten
Our family friends had a siamese catch that would fetch like a dog. Very cute.

Cute!
 

innerkitten

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Have you thought about fostering for a rescue group to see how it goes with your allergies?
 

emeraldlover1

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Pandora...I think we talked about this before but I have a Sphynx. My allergy tests always come back that I am allergic to dogs, cats, rabbits and such. I''m not allergic to this breed at all. Its totally weird because my mom is allergic to him only if she pets him.
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/14/2009 12:35:52 AM
Author: innerkitten
Have you thought about fostering for a rescue group to see how it goes with your allergies?

Unfortunately I''m at least a little allergic to cats in general. I''m hoping that Siberians, or Russian Blues, or Burmese, are going to be my "yay the allergic person can tolerate these breeds!" cats
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All those success stories...I want to be one!
 

cmarie

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Yeah, I want to be a success story too! I definitely think the saliva is why there is no such thing as an allergen-free cat. I guess I have to find a balance between listening to what the allergist says and testing cats out on my own.

I''m looking after one of my friend''s cats this week since he is going out of town, plus visiting another friend who has a cat tonight. I''d be afraid to volunteer at a shelter with so many animals -- the concentration of dander really makes a difference to me. But maybe my local shelter would let me visit a particular cat several times before adopting it. It would be so nice to save a homeless kitty!
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/14/2009 6:05:29 PM
Author: cmarie
Yeah, I want to be a success story too! I definitely think the saliva is why there is no such thing as an allergen-free cat. I guess I have to find a balance between listening to what the allergist says and testing cats out on my own.


I''m looking after one of my friend''s cats this week since he is going out of town, plus visiting another friend who has a cat tonight. I''d be afraid to volunteer at a shelter with so many animals -- the concentration of dander really makes a difference to me. But maybe my local shelter would let me visit a particular cat several times before adopting it. It would be so nice to save a homeless kitty!

Aw let us know how the cat-sitting goes!

On a side note, I found cattery #2 within about an hour of me. A bit more expensive ($1000) but they have two kittens available now (too bad I still can''t adopt them now because of traveling). But still!
 

Lynn B

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Date: 3/14/2009 6:05:29 PM
Author: cmarie
... I definitely think the saliva is why there is no such thing as an allergen-free cat. ...

Actually there are those ALLERCA cats... specially bred not to produce the protein that causes the allergies. The price? A mere $7,000 (to $17,000) !!!
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They now have dogs, too!

Allergy-Free Pets
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/14/2009 9:15:46 PM
Author: Lynn B
Date: 3/14/2009 6:05:29 PM

Author: cmarie

... I definitely think the saliva is why there is no such thing as an allergen-free cat. ...


Actually there are those ALLERCA cats... specially bred not to produce the protein that causes the allergies. The price? A mere $7,000 (to $17,000) !!!
23.gif
23.gif
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They now have dogs, too!


Allergy-Free Pets

I choked when I saw the prices. And then nearly passed out when I saw that they had that Ashara breed for a MERE $34,000 or so. Or was it $37,000?
 

AmberGretchen

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Date: 3/14/2009 6:05:29 PM
Author: cmarie
Yeah, I want to be a success story too! I definitely think the saliva is why there is no such thing as an allergen-free cat. I guess I have to find a balance between listening to what the allergist says and testing cats out on my own.


I''m looking after one of my friend''s cats this week since he is going out of town, plus visiting another friend who has a cat tonight. I''d be afraid to volunteer at a shelter with so many animals -- the concentration of dander really makes a difference to me. But maybe my local shelter would let me visit a particular cat several times before adopting it. It would be so nice to save a homeless kitty!

I''m imagining that a shelter would probably be fine with you spending extended time with a single kitty on more than one occasion (assuming that kitty didn''t get adopted in the meantime). Also, most reputable shelters have a return guarantee - i.e. if it doesn''t work out, for any reason, they want you to bring the kitty back to them. Even better than a shelter might be a rescue group. Because many rescue groups foster kitties in a home situation, you could experience what its like for your allergies in a home where that kitty has been living, which might be an even better approximation of what it would be like if/when you get it home.
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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An update: I sent in a deposit to get onto the waitlist at a breeder nearby (for a Siberian). I''m visiting this month to allergy test with their adult cats. It will still be fall by the time they get to me on the waitlist and I''m able to adopt (since I''m traveling before then) but I''m still so excited!
 

ladypirate

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Yay! Congratulations, BEG--I can''t wait for you to get your furbaby!!!
 

Lynn B

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YAY! How exciting!
Please keep us posted every step of the way... and when the time comes, MUST. HAVE. MANY. PICTURES!
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Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Thanks LP and Lynn! I wish it was going to be much much sooner but at least it gives me more time to think of kitten names
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Any suggestions?
 

ladypirate

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Oooo...hmm...do you know what s/he''ll look like?
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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I''m currently 11th on the waitlist, and will probably move up to 5th or 6th following the current litters being made available. The breeder said I should have my pick since I''m waiting until fall, so I''m hoping for a silver male (like in the pic below
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). BF is leaning towards JD - we both love Scrubs and we''re both law students working toward our JDs, lol.

BEGSilverSiberian.jpg
 

ksinger

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Date: 4/10/2009 4:22:32 PM
Author: Brown.Eyed.Girl
Thanks LP and Lynn! I wish it was going to be much much sooner but at least it gives me more time to think of kitten names
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Any suggestions?
The next cat I have, (if, of course, he agrees: cats don''t always LET you do this) will be named "Spinoza", probably "Spinny" for short.

If we ever get a dog, his name will be Anathema. Then I''ll teach him to sit.
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Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 4/10/2009 9:56:15 PM
Author: ksinger
Date: 4/10/2009 4:22:32 PM

Author: Brown.Eyed.Girl

Thanks LP and Lynn! I wish it was going to be much much sooner but at least it gives me more time to think of kitten names
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Any suggestions?
The next cat I have, (if, of course, he agrees: cats don''t always LET you do this) will be named ''Spinoza'', probably ''Spinny'' for short.


If we ever get a dog, his name will be Anathema. Then I''ll teach him to sit.
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I like that! Spinoza I mean (well I like Anathema too
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). Maybe I should name my cat Godel. Or heck, I''ll name it Quantum.
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Lynn B

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Oh, I LOVE naming pets!!!
If I ever have a girl kitty, I LOVE the name "Gracie"!
Do you have a preference of gender?
 
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