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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I have a question regarding cat breeding. My cat is 8 years old, 9 in November and has never had kittens before. She is really very beautiful but also really very tiny and my fear of something going wrong due to her size has been the reason why I have not let her have kittens yet. However, now that she is pushing on in years, my long for her “legacy” to be continued has been a recent thought lately. Im just wondering that considering her age and size if it’s a selfish gamble to consider mating her now.

Any opinions appreciated, Thanks.
 

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You asked for our opinions, so I'm going to comply.

I say that it's always a "selfish gamble" to breed cats or dogs. Animal shelters and sanctuaries are overflowing; thousands of beautiful creatures get destroyed everyday, simply because they're aren't enough homes to take them. Stray and feral animals are a growing problem. There's no justification for deliberately breeding more animals.

Also, although I can understand why you'd want to replicate the attributes that you love about your cat, there's no guarantee that such a thing would happen. Many people try to "clone" their beloved animal companions, only to learn that the offspring are unique and different beings. Just as human beings aren't carbon copies of their ancestors, cat and dog litters often don't look or behave anything like their parents.
 

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Thanks for reply. I must say that Im not out to try and clone my cat, granted she is beautiful but I really just want some connection, any connection to her as she is so special, looks or attitude are irrelevant, I would just like that they are related to her in some way. My main concern is her well-being considering the circumstances.
 

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If the only reason you want to breed her is so that you can make little versions of her then please reconsider! There are way too many cats out there right now, so without very good reason, and very qualified cats health, temperament and conformation wise I don't think anyone should be breeding their pets. I wish people could just enjoy their pets as pets and not worry about trying to make more of them, just enjoy HER now for who SHE is not for the potential kittens she could make who most likely will be anything but carbon copies. If you want to raise kittens then foster a pregnant cat from a shelter, that way instead of contributing to the overpopulation you're helping out the victims of it. I'm glad she's never had kittens, and I hope she never does for the sake of cats. Breeding without the goal of improving the breed is always a selfish gamble, you are always doing it for you and you are always putting the female's life at risk. That is of course just my opinion but I hope you will consider that the world does not need more pet cats right now and that you should be enjoying your cat right now, not worrying about making a new her as a replacement.
 

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Sorry you replied while I was typing. I know how hard it is to loose a pet and I know the pain of wanting them back but making her have babies will not ease the pain. Sure they may look like her but they will not BE her and that is what you will really want. I know many people who actually refuse to get a pet who looks like a past one because they may expect the pet to live up to the standards of the past pet and that's just not fair. Hey, she's only 8, stop thinking about her death and start really enjoying her life. When that time does come and you are ready for a new companion go to a shelter and find another who will connect with you, no it will not be her but neither will her kitten, but the bond you will form and the connection you will have could be just as good if you let it.
 

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Thanks for reply, but its crazy how misinterpreted my post is becoming. Im not trying to replicate my cat. Also ~Siameseifuplz~ I don’t like what you are implying, if my cat has a million kittens, those million kittens will have the best home in the world. All Im saying is that I would like her to have kittens, god forbid anything happen to her, that there is some link to her, perhaps its sad but you cant help sentimentality. The reason I posted is that Im wondering if its too risky as previously stated, theres nothing more to it.
 

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Honestly, political and animal welfare issues aside, I think 9 is too old for a first litter. My biggest concern for your cat is actually reproductive and mammary cancers, greatly increased in unspayed females; I'm hoping that she gets regular and thorough veterinary exams to keep an eye open for those issues, because they are very real. I could tell you stories, but it wouldn't be kind to do that to someone who is obviously conflicted already.

As for your desire to keep a connection to her...you know, I think it's impossible. I've often pondered this, especially now that Assumpta is getting on in years and I'm watching her slowly decline...I'd love to have some connection to her, but even if she wasn't spayed when she came to us, I wouldn't have bred her, and would have spayed immediately for the good of her health. Because one thing I have learned for sure is that no kitten is a replacement for its mother. Honestly. I have seen tons of momcats and hundreds of kittens, and each kitten is quite its own person (so to speak).

I am inordinately connected to my cat. She is glued to me almost 24/7. And what I have learned from this is that there is NO other cat that will be Assumpta, and no other cat that will even come close. What I have with her is a gift that I can only touch for a time, but one that I will always keep with me. I've been thinking about this a lot lately. Assumpta came to me as an abused, abandoned, mentally unstable stray that NO one wanted. The best way I can keep her with me is to do the same for another cat when she is gone...a cat who will be a unique individual, probably not "just like" Assumpta, but another cat who will teach me different things and affect me in different ways. If, somehow, I could magically produce another Assumpta that would be exactly the same, I would never know the joys of bonding to another cat, would never grow, never learn. I will always be connected to Assumpta, whether she's with me or not; the question is: do I use that connection and love to help another cat who might need me as badly as she once did?

The best we can do is cherish our pets while they are with us, learn all that we can from them, and honor them in death by continuing our love and learning by providing a loving chance to another animal who needs us.

That's my opinion, anyhow. Please make sure to keep up on your vet care to avoid problems.
 

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Well if risk is the question, I think you'd be better served asking your vet. Small cats can and do birth kittens successfully. But not knowing your cat, I don't think anyone here would be able to give you any opinion on the relative risk to your cat.
 

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there's also the issue of a male... how would you go about selecting one? Would you know his health status, if he has any genetic disorders such as heart problems? What about viruses he can share with her and the kittens such as Feline Leukemia and/or FIV? With her being a small cat, a very large male may produce kittens too big for her to safely carry and birth. Heck, ANY litter may be too big for her but there's no real way to tell that for sure. While 9 years old certainly isn't "OLD" in the sense of her entire life... it is pretty old to be having kittens, especially a first litter.

It really is best to have her spayed, as others have posted about the risks of certain cancers and infections are so much higher in intact females.
 

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Along with the "why breed your cat when there are millions homeless and in shelters?!" reason for not breeding your cat you should think about a few other things as well.

• Consider the amount of time and money you’ll need to invest in this if you breed her. There are not only vet bills for mama but for all her babies and you’ll need to handle them and at times care for them yourself.
• Consider genetic problems
• Some cats are not cut out to be mothers and will refuse to care for the litter leaving you to do all the work
• Problem pregnancy and labor which could not only kill your cat but the babies as well
• Birth defects in the kittens
• Homes for the other kittens you’re not going to keep, remember many people take on kittens because they feel emotionally blackmailed by a friend's kittens "needing homes" then decide that they do not want the responsibility of pet ownership. The majority of such kittens do not end up in good, permanent homes, in other words they end up on the streets and get infected, run over, eaten etc.
• Don’t assume a cat rescues will take in the other kittens, they may be full or don’t have the financial resources this also goes for shelters
• cats are at greater risk of FeLV and FIV infection when breeding
• You’ll need to worm, vaccinate, screen possible owners to ensure they go to GOOD HOMES

This is only a handful of things to consider before breeding her, you said she was small and she’s 8, which isn’t the best age for having her first litter, small cats can also prove to having problems with giving birth especially if the tom is large. You need to consider what male you’ll breed her to, look into his background for serious health problems etc. There are allot of things that could go wrong and that you need to read up on before doing anything

I’m a firm believer in fixing cats; there are way too many ferals and cats in shelters for me to ever consider it with any of my animals. The shelter I’m with aborts kittens when they find a stray female and spay her at the same time. There just aren’t enough homes and for ever kitten that is born an adult cat dies because it’s ran out of time to be adopted.
 

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An almost 9 year old cat is 50+ in human years, not exactly a good age for having babies. She may not even be able to get pregnant anymore. Add to that the fact that she's small and it would be her first litter. Just like with humans, the older she is, the higher risk the pregnancy is. Are you willing to risk her life to gain, at best, a nebulous connection? Are you willing to deal with kittens with birth defects? Are you able to financially care for kittens with birth defects?

Get her spayed to avoid the associated risks and enjoy the time you have with her.

Regarding the comments you've received about population control and not bringing more kittens into the world....it's a very real problem that many people feel very strongly about. If you bring up the subject of breeding a non-pedigree cat, you're going to hear about these issues. Do you want to contribute to the problem or be part of a solution?
 

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There are not enough homes in this world for the cats that already exist, much less the new ones being born. You may manage to find good loving homes for the kittens, but each of those kittens will take a home that a cat in a shelter could have had- a cat that is just as beautiful or friendly or healthy as any kitten that that could be produced by your cat and is just as deserving of a home.
Pet overpopulation is a very real problem. 40% of the cats that enter the shelter here never make it out alive, simply because there are not enough homes for them. Its the same, if not worse, almost anywhere you go. Its not just adult strays or mixed breeds that are being killed, its kittens and purebreds too. By irresponsibly breeding, you would be sentencing other cats to their death. Are you willing to shoulder that burden? Would you be willing to be the one to stick them with the needle? Don't those cats deserve homes too?

Please don't breed. Be part of the solution, not the problem. There are lives depending on you.
 

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I think, in this day an age, you're just not going to get very positive replies if you're thinking of breeding your cat. Whether it's about replicating your cat or not, and whether or not you can give the kittens a good home, I don't think it matters. The fact is that there are so many homeless kitties out there, so it's unlikely many people would support the idea.

As for whether she's too old, I guess getting her vet checked would be the best solution, as someone else suggested.

I'm sure she's very flattered about the fact that you'd like her legacy to go on :), but a better way to thank her might be to just enjoy her now. I don't know much about breeding, but she might not appreciate any stresses on her body since she's a bit older.

Not sure if this helped at all, just adding my two cents!
 

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I think it would be a risk to your kitty's health to have a litter at this age.

I have a special rapport with Arianwen, and had a rapport Sam and other kittehs I've shared my life with. That connection can sometimes be renewed after they go to the Rainbow Bridge. Sam comes to visit now and then, but it took a few years after he passed before he started visiting. I believe that a well-loved kitteh can find their way back to comfort us, and make sure we're doing well.

hint - To really connect with your kitteh, you must first try to let go of your human perspective. Try to see the world through feline eyes. Then you'll become your kitteh's true friend. :wink:
 

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I have to aggree with most here that breeding an 8 y/o kitty might not be the best for her.

I understand about wanting to continue a "legacy". We had shelties as I grew up and we had four of them. All from different breeders and parents and all were absolutly different personallitys. Pets are one of a kind like people.

Enjoy your kittys life now.
I am typing this one handed as my Duchess is asleep in my arms right now!
 

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I just have one point to make.

There are too many homeless kitties already. Why would you want to indirectly be the cause of more of them?
 
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