Ever wondered about the costs of owning a cat?
Owning a cat can put a dent in your wallet, especially if you’re considering a purebred. But what makes these luxurious kitties so special? There are several reasons why someone might choose to invest in a purebred cat. If you have the means, it’s a personal choice that can bring you and your family joy.
However, a purebred cat may not be the right fit for those on a budget. With many lovable and unique rescue cats out there, it’s worth exploring other options before committing to the high price tag of a purebred.
Money, Money, Money
To start, if you’re looking for an affordable option, then consider adopting a cat. When you adopt from a shelter, it usually will only cost you about $50 to $100, and you’re also providing a home for a cat that is in need. On the flip side, purchasing a quality purebred can set you back anywhere from $300 to $1,200.
The price you’ll pay for a purebred will depend upon the color and breed of the cat. Pet-quality kittens are considered the lowest in quality because they often have innate flaws. Heck, we all do. Sometimes a cat will have a tail kink or underbite. Though many will find these flaws delightful, others just don’t want them.
A breeding-quality kitten from a respected breeder is roughly $500 to $1,000 or more. There are written standards for each breed; generally, there will be no aesthetic flaws. Now, if you want to take it to another level and buy a show-quality kitten, it will cost you from $1,000 to $3,000 and can go all the way up to $15,000.
Show-quality cats are the highest in quality, and many variations in the cats fall into this category. But for the most part, if you’re purchasing a show kitten, it should be the creme de la creme. That’s the price that you pay for good genetics.
The high-end breeds that fall into the lower cash bracket include Siamese, Maine Coon, and Russian Blue. The color of the cat’s coat always affects the price. Take, for instance, the lilac point Siamese. They have light-colored eyes, bodies, and grayish-purple markings on their ears, paws, and faces.
The lilac point Siamese can cost 20 percent more than the traditional seal point Siamese. That’s because the latter has a darker body and darker markings. Higher-end breeds include Sphynx, Bengal, and Siberian cats. They are so expensive because they feature exotic colors. The colorpoint Siberian can cost 25 percent more than the others.
What You Should Look Out For
When purchasing a cat, there are several things that you should look out for during the buying process. When rescuing a cat from a shelter, be sure that the cat is neutered or spayed. This is often done at the rescue shelter. In fact, it’s a requirement for adoption, as well as initial vaccinations, deworming, and vet check-ups.
When purchasing from a breeder, be sure that the cat comes with registration papers, a health certificate, deworming, etc. You also should require proof that the cat tests negative for leukemia and immunodeficiency. Some breeders will also give you a sample bag of food for the cat to eat when they come home.
When purchasing from a non-local breeder, you may need to have the cat shipped to your door! Whether by ground or air, this can set you back $150 to $300. Check out the Independent Pet and Animal Transportation Association International when looking for quality shipping services.
Who doesn’t like a discount? When you adopt a purebred adult cat or purchase a retired purebred from a breeder, you are going to pay a lot less. We’re talking $100 to $300. If you’re looking for a cat rescue organization by breed, go to PurebredCatBreedRescue.org.
Tips For Shopping
• Before you start shopping for a cat, be sure you know what breed you’re most interested in. The Cat Fanciers Association is a great resource for looking at different breeds and figuring out which is best for you. They also offer a handy breeder referral service.
• Before purchasing a cat, be sure to investigate the breeder, just like you’d with anything that you really care about. Go to the International Cat Association online for a list of reputable breeders, and to read reviews.
• When you visit a breeder, be sure to ask many questions about the kitten’s grooming needs, special diet, temperament, and health concerns. You also want to meet the parents of the kitten and see what their temperaments are like.
Why a Registered Breeder?
It’s highly important that you choose a registered breeder when buying a purebred. When you purchase from an unregistered breeder, you’re getting no guarantee about the cat’s history, and sometimes they won’t even give you papers. They don’t perform routine checks on their animals, nor do they do DNA tests for genetic diseases.
When you purchase from a breeder, there’s a good chance that the kitten will be microchipped. They will also be treated for parasites, vaccinated, and desexed. Imagine how much money you’re going to save when all of this is done for you, instead of having to run around town to get it done by professionals.
We talked about this briefly, but now we’re going to drive it home. For how long can the health of your kitten be guaranteed? Any breeder worth their salt is going to provide you will need all this information before you purchase the kitten. In fact, it is their duty to do so.
What’s Compelling You to Buy the Cat?
When purchasing a cat, whether purebred or not, it’s impossible for emotions not to get wrapped up in it. That’s why you need to keep a level head. Purchasing a cat because it looks sad or sick is a bad idea. You’re not doing the cat any favors, nor are you going to make them spontaneously happy, just for the fact that they’re living in your home.
Purchasing from an unregistered or unethical breeder does not make you a hero. In fact, you’re perpetuating something that just needs to go away. Essentially, you’re buying into their stock and supporting what it is that they’re doing. What it’s going to mean for you down the road is a ton of expenses and vet bills.
Examining Your Priorities
When it comes to purchasing a cat, it’s time to do a little soul-searching. Which breed is right for you, and why? Do you want a cat that is constantly by your side? Or perhaps you want a more independent cat? Consider things like coat length, color, and temperament. For some people, choosing a hypoallergenic cat is the right way to go.
Health and Happiness Are Key
You can purchase the most pristine purebred and still be left with an unhappy or unhealthy cat. A good way to tell how your kitten is going to end up is by looking at the parents. Their nature is going to tell you what your kitten’s nature will be like when they grow up.
Does the kitten look happy and healthy? Then you’re on the right track to finding a cat that is perfect for your home. Another thing that you can do is check the kitten’s ears, bottom, nose, and eyes. You can tell when a cat is healthy, and when it is not. Clear, vibrant eyes without crusting or discharge are key.
In terms of other health factors, be sure to look at the cat’s gums. A healthy pink color is what you want, as well as white teeth and no bad breath. The coat should be shiny and soft, without bald patches or fleas. The coat should not have a greasy feel, because if this is the case, they have not been well-groomed by their mother.
In terms of the kitten’s body size, they should be well-nourished and not scrawny. There’s a difference between scrawny and slender, so be sure to know what is common for the breed. They should have a nice round belly, but not pot-bellied.
In terms of the kitten’s personality, they should be naturally confident and outgoing. When it comes to energy levels, most kittens are either 100% energy or they’re sleeping. There’s very little variation. They should be comfortable around strangers, and curious about new people.
Any good breeder is going to be asking you a lot of questions because they’ve raised the kitten since birth and care about what house it’s going to. They want to find the best possible family, and by asking questions, they’re making sure that that’s you! After all, a healthy cat can live for up to 20 years, so finding the right match is important.
Now that we’ve explored the general price of regular cats and purebreds, you probably have much to consider. Making sure that you find the right cat for you is tremendously important. It’s an investment of time, money, and love, and choosing the right cat can have a major impact on your life.
Take the time to find the right breed, breeder, and kitten that will light up your life. If you have to spend a fortune to do all that, then so be it.
19 Awesome Cats That Cost a Fortune (Video)
10 Related Questions About the Average Costs of Purebred Cats
1. What are the benefits of adopting a cat from a shelter over purchasing a purebred?
Adopting a cat from a shelter has several benefits over purchasing a purebred. Firstly, the cost of adoption is usually much lower, ranging from $50 to $100. Secondly, you have the opportunity to provide a loving home to a cat in need. Finally, shelters often include initial vaccinations, deworming, and spay/neuter procedures in the adoption fees, which can save you money compared to purchasing a purebred cat that may not come with these services already completed.
2. Does the color of a cat’s coat significantly impact the price of purebred cats?
Yes, the color of a cat’s coat can significantly impact the price of purebred cats. Some coat colors are rarer and more highly desired, which can lead to higher prices for those specific breeds. For example, the lilac point Siamese can cost 20 percent more than the traditional seal point Siamese due to its lighter-colored eyes, body, and markings.
3. Can I find a purebred adult or retired purebred cat at a discounted price?
Yes, it is possible to find a purebred adult or retired purebred cats at a discounted price. Adopting a purebred adult cat or purchasing a retired purebred from a breeder can cost significantly less, usually ranging from $100 to $300. You can find a list of cat rescue organizations by breed at PurebredCatBreedRescue.org.
4. What is the difference between pet quality, breeding quality, and show-quality purebred cats in terms of price and characteristics?
Pet-quality kittens are considered the lowest in quality due to innate flaws like tail kinks or underbites and can cost anywhere from $300 to $1,200. Breeding-quality kittens from respected breeders typically have no aesthetic flaws and cost around $500 to $1,000 or more. Show-quality kittens are the highest quality and can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 and up to $15,000, depending on various factors such as the breed’s rarity and conformity to breed standards.
5. When purchasing a cat from a breeder, what essential health checks and documentation should I ask for?
When purchasing a cat from a breeder, ensure that the cat comes with registration papers, a health certificate, and deworming records. You should also ask for proof that the cat tests negative for feline leukemia and immunodeficiency. Some breeders may also provide you with a sample bag of food for the cat to eat when they come home.
6. Why is choosing a registered breeder when purchasing a purebred cat important?
Choosing a registered breeder when purchasing a purebred cat is important because they provide guarantees about the cat’s history, perform routine checks on their animals, and conduct DNA tests for genetic diseases. Unregistered breeders may not offer these assurances, and purchasing from them can lead to unknown health issues and potentially costly vet bills down the line.
7. What should I consider when selecting a breed that would be a good fit for my lifestyle and preferences?
When selecting a breed for your lifestyle and preferences, consider factors such as the cat’s coat length, color, temperament, and any specific health concerns. You may also want to consider whether you prefer a more affectionate and clingy cat or one more independent. If allergies are a concern, looking into hypoallergenic breeds might be a good idea.
8. How can I determine whether a kitten is healthy and happy before purchasing or adopting them?
Observe their behavior and physical appearance to determine if a kitten is healthy and happy. A healthy kitten should have clear, vibrant eyes without discharge or crusting, pink gums, white teeth, a shiny and soft coat, and a well-nourished body. In terms of behavior, they should be confident, outgoing, comfortable around strangers, and curious about new people.
9. What are some important aspects of a cat’s health to look for when examining them before making a decision?
When examining a cat’s health, pay attention to its eyes, ears, nose, teeth, gums, coat, and body size. Look for clear eyes without discharge, clean ears without foul odor, a moist and clean nose, healthy pink gums, white teeth, a shiny and clean coat, and a well-nourished body. A healthy cat should also not show any signs of difficulty breathing, limping, or lethargy.
10. When choosing a breeder, how can I ensure they are reputable and trustworthy?
To ensure a breeder is reputable and trustworthy, do thorough research before making a decision. Visit the International Cat Association online for a list of reputable breeders and read reviews from previous customers. When visiting the breeder, ask plenty of questions about the kitten’s grooming needs, special diet, temperament, and health concerns, and request to meet the kitten’s parents to observe their temperament and living conditions.
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"In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this."
-- Terry Pratchett