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PostPosted: Tue Dec 13, 2016 2:28 am 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 1:39 am
Posts: 1
Hi. I'd like to introduce myself and my new baby. A lot of what I'm about to write will be completely "flame-worthy". After reading for the past few hours here, I realize the extent of the mistakes I've made over the past twenty-four hours!

A few weeks ago, I was browsing the web and found a photo of the most stunning cat I'd ever seen--a bengal. Our elderly Maine Coon, Frankie, went to the Rainbow Bridge in late September, and though we are still grieving, the house just felt empty without a feline. I read a bit about the bengal breed, googled a local breeder (the closest I could find--a four hour drive) and inquired about kittens. Ok, that was mistake number one on a long list. I realize now that I should have searched for recommendations. The breeder's website was also, in retrospect, loaded with red flags. The kittens listed as available were twelve weeks, already spayed/neutered, and were being offered for $400 without papers. The parents were both listed as TICA registered, but their names/pedigrees weren't given. I was oblivious at that point to what I should have noted--low price, young age at which they were fixed, no show info for the parents, etc.

At any rate, we made the trip yesterday and met the breeder in a parking lot from which I had assumed we would follow her to her cattery. Instead, she emerged with a carrier full of kittens and asked us to choose the one we wanted. After a four hour journey, I was determined not to leave without a kitten in tow, and OMG were they all adorable! We chose the first little guy to pop his head out, paid the breeder, were given a receipt and proof of the first shots (as well as a gift bag of Kit and Kaboodle--yeah, I know--and several new toys), and headed home. Before we hit home, we were smitten by this little cat with a larger than life personality.

So here we are. I am looking to learn more--better late than never--and fully expect to be chastised for how we went about it. If we were conned and I now own a domestic tabby, I can assure you that he will be as loved and wanted as any $1000 proven bengal. I am attaching pics and, I hope, a file of a video of my daughter playing with him (the crate you see is for sleeping only and is right next to our bed). I welcome the criticism for my horrible path to kitty ownership as well as any opinions as to whether we were sold a very expensive domestic shorthair or if we really found a bargain more through ignorance than luck.

[BBvideo 425,350]http://vid317.photobucket.com/albums/mm361/Arielyn211/IMG_0222_zpswdnqjdbd.mp4[/BBvideo]

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 4:23 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 8:00 am
Posts: 707
Location: Ogden, UT
Please don't fret over being "flamed". You are not the first person to make such a quick decision.

Your kitten is adorable and looks very much the Bengal.

12 weeks is an appropriate age at which to pick up your kitten but certainly no younger than that.

12 weeks is also not too young for a spay/neuter.

I picked up my boy at 13 weeks. He had been neutered at 10 1/2 weeks. This is not too early to neuter a kitten. In fact, many breeders will not sell kittens that are not to be used for breeding without neutering them first.

I hope that you have read some of the posts in here about keeping your kitty in a safe room for a short period of time. This is a traumatic period of his life.

Please take him to the vet for a wellness visit asap. If there is anything wrong, you need to see to it quickly. Also, if you are purchasing pet insurance, do not wait until there is a problem to invest in it. You need to get him on to a schedule to complete his vaccines as well.

Good luck with your beers! You have much adventure to come.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 4:47 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2016 6:21 pm
Posts: 105
I would agree something very shady went on with the breeder and is likely a backyard breeder. That doesn't mean your kitten isn't a Bengal, indeed - if your kitten isn't a Bengal there is an awful lot of Bengal in him. At this point I would just assume Bengal and no one will be able to tell you differently unless you want to genetically test him (but really do you care? - just enjoy!). We have definitely rushed into some pet purchases (especially after the death of one of ours).

As way said - a lot of breeders practice early spay / neuter. It's becoming a lot more common for cats (not recommended for dogs); but with cats they can recover faster and there have been studies which have shown no difference in a cat that is neutered at 6 months vs. 11 weeks.

I highly recommend pet insurance (and get it as soon as possible). All pet insurances will exclude any preexisting conditions - so hopefully you can do a quick vet exam get a clean bill of health and sign up for insurance and then there are no preexisting conditions.

Please ask your questions and we'll all do our best to answer!

Welcome!

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:24 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:00 am
Posts: 4145
Location: Portland Oregon, USA
I can just picture it:
car drives into a dark alleyway and stop. A hooded figure approaches
"psst over here"
"you got the kitten?"
"you got the money?"
you hand over a small suitcase full of small bills
he hands over a wrinkled paper bag with a cat in it
you give a slight bow and get back into the car
he fades into the shadows...

The world of pure-bred cats is a confusing and baffling place for first-timers. It was for me too. I have to say though, I'm not sure I agree with your lessons learned. Like Ontariobengals mentions, early neutering is actually a pretty desirable thing, and usually a sign of a diligent breeder (since it's an extra cost to them). Also, for me I wouldn't put much stock into reviews when it comes to selecting a breeder. It's very unlike buying a blanket on Etsy or a piece of memorabilia on ebay. And quite frankly I care a lot more about how they raised and bred their kittens more so than the transaction itself, or whether they offered me a lot of support after I took the kitten home. There are a lot of objective things to look for though, and there has been a lot of discussion about that here.

In terms of the cat that you got, yea, at this point, like you said, the manner in which you got him isn't really that important. He's your cat, and a very handsome kitty, and sure looks like a bengal to me!. Take good care of him and love him. You'll get no criticism of him in this forum. He needs a better toy though :wink: Check out 'dabird or neko flies. Also getting him some approved things to climb (like a tall cat tree or shelves) is also a great early purchase for a bengal. Have fun!

Welcome to the forum.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:45 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Tue Sep 23, 2014 6:38 pm
Posts: 1836
Your new baby is adorable! He definitely looks like a bengal kitten to me. Even if he is not 100% bengal, those unique traits will make him stand out.

I adopted a couple of "siamese" kittens from a rescue agency. I have owned siamese my whole life and they were unlike any I had seen. Their look was different, their crazy nature, love of water and high places, rough play, etc. I was so curious i had one of them genetically tested which was quite pricy (unlike dogs). I found out that she was a charcoal snow but since she had no papers that automatically translates into a mixed breed. That explained a lot like why my kittens would jump into the bathtub with me each day, why they were swinging from the curtains and scaling a rock wall in my living room. They also had insatiable hunger and would demand my dinner after they inhaled their dinner in seconds flat. They would chase each other and have the most incredible play sessions that looked quite rough to me, but they still do this on a daily basis so I guess it is what they enjoy. Anyway, they are very lively and don't just sit on a pillow all day. The are demanding, love consistency and having me nearby. I just adore them and making them happy. Have fun with your new kitten.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:28 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2016 6:21 pm
Posts: 105
I second the cat tree suggestion. Bengals really like heights - a well made cat tree is worth the money.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:31 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8150
Welcome to our great forum. You won't receive any "flaming" here. We very much try to support the members who post here. Your baby is beautiful and looks like a bengal to me. Yes, the breeder is obviously a backyard breeder who cannot or refuses to provide registration papers to you. Words are cheap and can be lies. That being said, do you feel your baby was worth the $400 you paid for her? If so, then no harm done. Have you taken her to the vet to be thoroughly checked out and to start a medical chart on her?

It is possible you have a bengal mix, but there is definitely bengal in there. Do not beat yourself up over this. First, you rescued a cat that needs a home. Hopefully, the other kittens will as well. Anyone can create a website or Facebook page for their "cattery." I'm not saying you were taken advantage of, but a quality breeder would allow you to visit their cattery and inspect it and see at least one of the parents.

I was just on a website of a breeder -- DragonflyBengal -- and there is no information there on the parents of their queens and sires. In fact, many of the cats have one name and not a pedigreed name. They claimed to be a TICA registered cattery. Even though they lack pertinent information that many breeders freely put on their website, they may, indeed, be a high-quality breeder. You just never know.


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