quick story. ive had stray cats all my life. now im looking into buying a Bengal cat from a breeder. but i have mixed feelings. if i go to the humane society, ill end up getting the sickest and oldest cat there cuz it's just how i am. but i just went through the loss of two cats in the past two years. it wasnt easy emotionally or financially.
should i just get a Bengal kitten and not worry about it? Ive already met the breeder and the kittens.
or should i go to the humane society and save a cat?
if I get a Bengal cat, am I indirectly ensuring that a humane society cat gets euthanized? am i thinking about it too much?
this sounds stupid but im really torn. any suggestions or ideas would be appreciated.
I couldn't in good conscience support a breeder. I don't even adopt kittens, always older cats, and sometimes I too feel like I run a hospice or cat elder care facility. Not gonna tell you what to do OP, but in your heart, you know.
Without breeders of exotic cats, there would be purebreds, r1. There are reputable breeders out there who love cats.
OP, if you want a Bengal cat, get the Bengal cat. You can not save all the cats in the world that need homes. You should not have to carry the weight of those who are really responsible for overbreeding and unwanted cats: iresponsible cat owners who fail to neuter/spade their pets and then continue to allow them to roam the neighborhood or escape their homes.
Make sure you read up on Bengals. They are a wild bunch that need plenty of exercise and stimulation. You will become exhausted just watching them go crazy in your living room.
I always get my dogs from a reputable breeder and then cut a check for the same amount to the local SPCA (usually well over $1,000). I like to get younger dogs (around 4 months) from a breeder where I can see the parents, siblings, etc.
You think you have had problems before...get this kitten and THEN you will understand about problems. And no, breeders are not needed.
I like r3's thinking - why not get both? Is it a financial issue that prevents you from getting more than one?
Never "spade" your pet, by the way.
All of my pets have been from shelters. But taking loving care of a pet is the same regardless of where it comes from.
Get the kitty you want OP. But make sure that you feel a connection to this Bengal. I really do believe that our pets pick us too.
My humane society does not euthanize adoptable pets. They certainly need funds and volunteers.
Guilt over sick elderly animals is a waste of human energy. Take action and good luck.
more ideas please. i am an emotional wreck for no reason right now. someone tell me what to do
[quote]Without breeders of exotic cats, there would be purebreds, [R1]. There are reputable breeders out there who love cats.
Until there are no more homeless pets, no one should be breeding animals. Same goes for children, IMO.
[quote]if I get a Bengal cat, am I indirectly ensuring that a humane society cat gets euthanized?
No. You're directly ensuring that.
If you go to a shelter and adopt Fluffy, Fluffy gets a home.
If you go to a breeder for a designer pet, you don't adopt Fluffy.
That doesn't necessarily mean Fluffy won't get a home. Perhaps a less shallow person who chooses not to support the unethical pet-breeding industry will adopt Fluffy.
But that less shallow person who chooses not to support the unethical pet-breeding industry would have probably gone home with a pet anyway, say, Snowball. But now the lspwcntstupbi is taking Fluffy, who would've been your choice, so Snowball stays behind. And when it comes time to euthenize the picked-over animals to make room for the endless stream of new strays and castoffs, Snowball gets gassed.
So yes, every designer animal you order from a breeder in lieu of a shelter pet directly causes another, unwanted animal to be put to death.
This is simple math, which anyone over 4 could grasp, if they weren't internally trying to persuade themselves that purchasing a designer pet from a breeder when shelters literally can't give away unwanted animals fast enough doesn't make them a horrible, selfish person.
Enjoy your Bengal! If you're truly devoid of any shred of humanity, you probably won't see poor, dead Snowball staring back when you look into her eyes. Just shower her with all the affection and comforts she's earned by being an expensive, custom-bred, genetic anomaly that makes the perfect accessory, too. After all, you're an "animal lover".
I agree, get two kittens. Otherwise you feel guilty when you have to leave the house for long hours.
How big is a Bengal Cat?
R10 - of course he is not directly ensuring that.
OP - get the cat you want and make a donation to your local shelter to ease your mind. Dropping off $1,000 or so at the shelter will save many more lives than just one.
OP, Don't they have a rescue group for that breed you can look into? I got the most adorable himalayan kitten from rescue when she was only 9 weeks old. SO CUTE. She's now close to 6 months old and while she is very petite for her age (her mom died during birth so they were bottle fed) she is a very healthy girl and happy kitten.
Since the late 1960s - when the Bengal cat was developed through hybridization of Asian Leopard cats and domestic cats - it has gained huge popularity. However, in recent years, a novel early-onset autosomal recessive disorder was described in this breed. This disease appears to be an early-onset primary photoreceptor disorder, leading to blindness within the first year of age.
OP, I a a rescue kind of person, but think all cats are the pinnacle of creation. Why don't you split the difference and adopt a rescue Bengal?
Unfortunately, idiots see certain breeds and buy them without doing proper research, then the animal must pay for its idiot human keeper's mistake. That's why we have so many Jack Russell and Bedlington terriers in rescue networks. The same types adopt Bengals, not knowing how labor-intensive they are. Or love them until they get a human baby, then out goes the pet.
Along the same track, I have a question: why do so many unwanted purebred dogs get turned over to breed-specific rescues; while unwanted purebred cats get turned out of doors to fend for themselves?
A friend has two Bengal cats, and they are SO BAD. They break things, they pee and poo where they please, they won't do anything their humans want them to do, and they're not very affectionate. He's very frustrated with them.
Get a couple of feral kittens. They're easy to come by, just tell everyone you know that you're looking for kittens. Before long, someone will find a litter or knows someone who has. FYI, feral kittens really do tend to grow up into good house cats, but your best bet is to get them young.
just don't talk about it constantly. Nothing more annoying than cat people who think anyone gives a shit about their stories.
I have a darling Maine Coon someone abandoned at a rescuer's care station, with the weak excuse they didn't know most MCs aren't "lap cats."
lol R16, we had a feral kitten when I was growing up. He use to disappear for months on end to go and hunt. First it was a couple months, then a year would go by and he would finally "make an appearance" in our yard - but would not take any food we offered him. THe longest time span he would disappear was 2 years. He was a real hunter cat, and not meant to be a house cat. We had gotten him from a friend who had a farm.
Some feral cats can't really be domesticated, and he was one of them. He was a cool cat though, just not a house cat.
Yes, learn about the breed before making your decision. To me, the Bengal is beautiful to look at but it sounds like I wouldn't want that kind of personality in a pet. The thing about getting an older cat (not old) from a shelter is that you can tell about their personality pretty quickly. But with a kitten you can't tell what you're going to end up with. For me the hardest part would be picking one. I'd feel sad for all the rest. I've had purebred dogs all my life but the best pet I ever had was a stray cat - brilliant cat, just brilliant and super affectionate.
no r10. The only people ensuring the death of kitties are the irresponsible cat owners who dropped her off at the shelter in the first place. The same owners who were irresponsible in not neutering or spaying their cats.
If everyone who owned cats neutered/spayed their cats there would not be seasonal dumping of unwanted kitties at the shelters.
All blame belongs to irresponsible people who think animals are so disposable.
Feral cats do NOT make good housepets. They make good barn cats. They will never be affectionate and never be housebroken. They are wild animals. When feral cats get brought into my local shelter, they don't even offer them for adoption. They get spayed and neutered and are given to farmers who need them to control mice and rats in their barns. They are not putty-tatts. My sister took in a bunch of feral cats and they ran her life (and destroyed her house) for 15 years... for nothing. She fed and cared for the damned cats and she couldn't even get close to them.
OP, get the kitten you want. If you feel really guilty, give a donation to a shelter. Think that the kitten you buy, if not bought by you - somebody who knows and loves cats - could very well be bought by some idiot as a toy for their spoiled brat and end up meeting an untimely end. There you go: I've made you feel doubly guilty...
I live on a farm and R22 is correct about feral cats. They're wild not pets. Plus, they can fend for themselves unlike many house cats.
R22, this is a picture of my feral cat, snuggling and purring. I got him as a kitten, and he's always been a sweet, affectionate, well-behaved house cat.
Like I said, feral KITTENS can make wonderful pets, but adult ferals... not so much. Adolescent ferals, sometimes.
Awww, R24, I love your handsome little man. He looks just like my late love, LTK (Long Tall Kitty), also a feral kitten that I tamed.
[quote] if i go to the humane society, ill end up getting the sickest and oldest cat there cuz it's just how i am
A lot of shelters have pictures of their adoptable animals on their websites. You can browse them and find what ever style/color/type pet you want
[quote] should i just get a Bengal kitten and not worry about it? Ive already met the breeder and the kittens. or should i go to the humane society and save a cat? if I get a Bengal cat, am I indirectly ensuring that a humane society cat gets euthanized?
This is literally Sophie's Choice
[quote]The thing about getting an older cat (not old) from a shelter is that you can tell about their personality pretty quickly. But with a kitten you can't tell what you're going to end up with.
This is very true, especially with cats.
And shelter volunteers (who spend a lot of time socializing with shelter animals) are very good at assessing an animal's personality. If you're looking to adopt a cat or a dog, call the shelter and ask to come in when a regular volunteer is there. They'll help you make a good match.
R15, can you suggest a dog breed which, from puppyhood, is not so "labor intensive"? I would probably choose a pound pooch, but I would like a better idea about what I'm getting myself in for there, as well. I think Jack Russells are so cute, but I know they're hard to raise, and I'd rather have a dog who isn't.
Some y'all are dumb. There is no guarantee of anything and the common answers to the most docile dog breeds have been the same for 100 years before the internet.
Grow a pair. Where is your instinct?
I have a neurotic prissy friend who planned for six months with a breeder to get a prize Jack Russel Terrier. He was excited and bored everyone of his pet owning friends to death with his anticipation. We assisted with his preparation for this change and encouraged what this "perfect" for him dog would bring to his life.
He returned the dog to the breeders at the end of the first weekend he had it and forfeited his money. He could not cope with the simplest things. Preparation means nothing if you know nothing of yourself.
If you don't have a feel for animals don't get fancy. Read all you want, but have some fucking sense.
Find and use your instincts, but be prepared for things to go wrong. Don't take home and reject animals and don't spend too much time researching a pet like a dream date. If you are not ready to be inconvenienced or interrupted, don't get a pet.
A Bengal cat is only a cat in the sense that a lion is a cat or a cheetah is a cat.
Get a REAL housecat. Simply get a can of tuna, go into an alley and BOOM you got a cat.
"A Bengal cat is only a cat in the sense that a lion is a cat or a cheetah is a cat."
I don't know if that's strictly true, but it might as well be. I know a couple of Bengals (and they're very bad), and they really do seem to be a different species of animal than house cats.
They don't behave like house cats, they don't look like house cats, they don't eat like house cats, and they certainly don't relate to humans the way house cats do. Really, they don't seem to want the same kind of close relationship with their humans that a domesticated animal does.
I like the get both idea, if that's feasible for you. I understand wanting a specific breed of cat. I've always been drawn to Russian Blues, based off of both looks and personality, they seem like the ideal cat for me, but in the long run, it doesn't matter.
You'll bond with a shelter cat just as much, even if it wasn't your dream cat. I wanted a quiet, mild-mannered, male grey cat. I ended up with a noisy, bitchy, female tortoise shell because she literally chose me at the shelter. I love her even though she's not what I intended.
Speaking of feral cats, my cat was born born feral, and was taken into a shelter as a kitten. She was originally going to be made a barn cat, but I adopted her at six months, and I can't imagine anyone better fitting the definition of house cat. Depends on the individual personality.
OP, you've clearly already made up your mind to get a Bengal. You've met the breeder and the kittens already. Duh.
Yes, you would save a cat's life if you adopted it from a shelter but that's not the cat you want. Stop dicking around and get the Bengal. Donate to a shelter if you feel guilty.
OP, don't get a bengal.
My parents adopted from a shelter in Phoenix and got what they thought was a cute, active kitten with an interesting coat.
Turns out as it grew, it got meaner and really territorial. My folks had her tested and the thing turned out to be half Bengal.
The thing is evil. After a few years of biting and scratching it's finally okay with my parents, but when I visit it hisses, bites....just a mean breed.
Get a normal, domestic shelter cat. And avoid kittens that look like they cold be Bengal. My parents got one by accident. They love her, but she's a monster.
I would love to get a Siberian cat, a breed that is hypoallergenic (allegedly). Unfortunately, they are far too expensive so I'm not going to get one. Instead, I'll probably adopt a light-coloured female cat as they produce less of the fel d 1 allergen that antagonizes me so.
How does this relate to you, OP? It really doesn't. I guess what I'm trying to say is because I cannot afford to plop down $2000 for a hypoallergenic cat, I'll adopt one that isn't such an allergen machine and invest in cat wipes and an air filter.
My point? Life's short. Get the cat you want but if you're feeling this conflicted about getting a Bengal vs. a shelter cat, maybe you should just get a shelter cat that looks like a Bengal. I've got nothing, really. Sorry for rambling.
Thank you, everyone!
r36 is kind of sweet.
We have similar sentiments, but he is cuter.
OP, just get a cat. Whatever you want.
[quote]Never "spade" your pet, by the way.
[quote]Speaking of feral cats, my cat was born feral, and was taken into a shelter as a kitten. She was originally going to be made a barn cat, but I adopted her at six months, and I can't imagine anyone better fitting the definition of house cat. Depends on the individual personality.
Yes, a cat's individual personality is probably THE determining factor in whether it's a lapcat, housecat, or barncat.
My Cleo was a stray/feral, who I took in when she was nearly an adult [probably 8-14 months old]. On the street, she was standoffish, but once I brought her home, she was a total cuddlebug!
My friend's cat Frisky, otoh, can NOT be picked up by anyone. And my friend has had Frisky since before she was born! (She had the momcat.) And Frisky has NEVER been abused or mistreated in any way, but she still won't let anyone pick her up (and won't climb on anyone, either).
I wish there were more people like you and I, who A) can understand simple math, and B) have the brains/balls to adopt rescue pets instead of using backyard breeders or puppymills.
My most wonderful pets were shelter cats. They're loving and happy to have homes. All three I've had in my adult life were adopted as older, harder to adopt cat (6mos-2 yr) were all incredible pets. Very loving and affectionate. Many an older cat will be someone's abandoned pet who is a housecat and calm and loving.
Those are the cats that need homes the most.
You're a good soul, OP, adopting shelter cats in the past. The fact that you adopted several before and are conflicted about this current dilemma means you strongly connect with these pets, and not just treat them as "home decor" or "just animals in the house". With the possibility that these Bengals are wild enough to not have personalities that seek owner bonding, as others have shared, if I were in your shoes, I would not risk it. I like pet companions to cuddle and shower affection on, not animals I just have to care for. Why not adopt young healthy kittens, instead? No requirement for you to have to take in the old/sick ones. No pet hospice vibe, you saved a kitty, it's guaranteed a domesticated pet-- win-win-win.
R36, a short-haired cat can produce allergens, too. I'm allergic to some cats, but not all, and the breed I react most strongly to is the Blue Point Siamese.
Very jealous, Sasha's mom--Himalayans are so beautiful. Definitely look into a breed-specific rescue b4 buying from a breeder or god forbid, a pet shop.