SIBERIAN CATS

of SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

Siberian Gatos Cattery


Siberian Gatos Mission

We are a different Siberian Cattery with a special mission. Our mission is to breed the healthiest possible Siberian kittens and cats.  We want to raise our Siberian kittens in the most social environment consistent with excellent health.  In short we are trying to breed the perfect pet Siberian kittens and cats.  We want to breed Siberian pet kittens primarily for the cat allergic who could not otherwise have cats for pets.  We seek genetic diversity in our Siberian cats and believe that prolongs the cat's life and contributes to healthy immune systems. We define pet cats as cats that are companions and not exploited, whose best interests are considered along with their human companions. 

 

Siberian Gatos Pets

We believe that Siberian kittens treated as pets from the time they are born make better pets. We have had Siberian kittens born and raised to Siberian cats in our home and a Siberian cat bred in a cattery, born in a cage, raised in a large cattery room and cages and run before coming to us. The difference in how well these Siberian cats related to humans was phenomenal to me (and to other observers). It helped clarify our thoughts about how to raise our Siberian kittens to be pets.

Pets need petting, and interactions with people.  Everyone in our family of four pets our Siberian kittens. The new owner makes the fifth person to have a social relation with the kitten. Jamie sleeps with the kittens often. Our Siberian kittens grow up knowing people intimately as friends. We don't use cages, but use Jamie's large room with private (screened) balcony or my large bedroom and bathroom if we need to isolate cats from each other. We are trying to provide the most socialized Siberian kittens it is possible to have.

 

HCM: Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Does HCM occur in Siberian cats? YES. We try to breed Siberian kittens without HCM not only by choosing our pedigrees (all have a risk of HCM somewhere though some might be better), but by screening every breeder, repeatedly for HCM. No equivocal cats are used. I hope that eventually all Siberian breeders will screen every cat repeatedly. I know of two catteries that do this so far, one in Belgium, one in Finland.

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy is a genetic trait in cats. In Maine Coon Cats this was first reported to be clearly described as an autosomal dominant, from UC Davis, and has proved true in other breeds. In about 2002, I noticed Siberian cats had died from Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. I believed this genetic trait existed in the breed. Immediately we put it in our health contract we would recognize and cover this as a genetic defect, and we began watching for lines likely to have HCM and for opportunities to get our cats tested for HCM. Lately it has emerged that HCM is somewhat widespread among the gene pool of Siberians. Probably there is an autosomal dominant form, it is possible there is a second form. Reports are that the genetic test developed for Maine Coons will not work in Siberians. Certainly all our pedigrees have a risk factor somewhere, as do most. The answer: SCREEN. All our breeders have been echoed for HCM, and repeat echoed when possible. Regular screening is part of our protocol. Our last screening was completed in spring 2007..

The vets who have done all our cat were very impressed. " What is this breed, it is so friendly I can't get either to stop purring while I listen to the heart. They are so beautiful and so friendly. Tell me about the breed." These are feline cardiologist vets and had never seen Siberian cats. No other Siberian breeders appeared to be screening. Siberians cats are easy to echo. Our six cats were done in an hour, the standard time it takes to do four, with excellent quality scans. Our young stud Arkady became the standard on the machine he was done with for his age.

The following site is a very good reference on feline diseases, including HCM.

 

 

FIP and Other Feline Virii

As they were saying no cattery was safe from FIP, I was planning what I could do about it. The feline corona virus (FeCV), the parent virus of FIP, is not uncommon. It occurs in many species of animals other than cats, and causes 10-20% of human colds, so it is possible that any cat will be exposed. If your cat meets corona virus and becomes immune to it, fine; but if the virus establishes itself and undergoes this common mutation, you cat may develop FIP. The FIP mutation is rare in cats that are mature but not old, but happens more easily in young cats, < 2 years or older cats. Contracting FIP is usually lethal to cats if active. So I started this way:

First I wanted to make sure our foundation Siberian cats didn't have any corona virus already, so I had Sunshine and Ginevra tested. I started with the lab recommended by our vet, which said negative but then learned that most labs are of terrible quality. So I tried to find out what the best was. The best lab in the world seemed to be Dr. Addie at the University of Glasgow . So I sent their blood to Scotland. Their titres both came back zero-no exposure ever to any feline corona virus ever. I have asked Dr. Addie to list us in the corona virus negative stud and queen registry . All new Siberians entering our cattery are tested with Dr. Addie and found to be negative before being allowed to mingle with our cats. We are the only Siberian cattery in the world to be listed there. We are also the first American Cattery to have registered so far. Our cats have also been tested and tested negative for FeLV and FIV (before we made the decision to breed) and are negative for both, as shown at this site, currently the bottom entry.

Sadly, when we used an outside stud for a prolonged period of time, our Siberian cats were exposed to the Corona virus. Nevertheless, we have never had any FIP cats or kittens. We pursue policies in exposure control, immune system support, and all organic diets as ways to decrease risk.

 

Outdoor Cats

Cats are at risk for bird flu, (an Influenza H5N1) from eating birds they prey upon. They have not yet been indicted for spreading bird flu to humans. For more information see this article. WHO reported in 2004 that cats had gotten and died from bird flu.

That notable science source You Tube has an interesting video with lovely music titled 2 million birds fall from sky dead say russian scientists. Bird flu may be a bigger problem than previously recognized.

On to other outdoor health hazards. Calicivirus is endemic among cats. Beginning in 1998 Dr. Niels Pedersen, an outstanding veterinary researcher in infectious diseases at UCDavis identified a new malignant form of calicivirus. By 2002 it had reached epidemic proportions in southern CA and was noted in other areas.

Elsewhere, I can't find the reference, it was noted that this strain does not seem to respond with protective immune reaction to the vaccine for calicivirus. I don't know if this has been confirmed.

Cats are also vulnerable to heartworm. They are not as vulnerable as dogs are but they can get this and it is very difficult to treat. If you take your cat outside, talk to your vet about this.

All our kittens are sold as indoor only cats. Please discuss with me if you wish to take your cats outside.

 

Litter at Siberian Gatos

We have used Litter Purrfect available from Costco. Currently, we are using Arm and Hammer. While these are excellent products for cattery or multi-cat households, we do not feel that this is very important for single cat households.

Cages

We don't generally cage our cats. Our Siberian male cat is a pet cat (and sweetheart) too, and it would break his heart to be caged. This is part of our belief about respecting the interdependent web of all existence, of which we are a part. This is another place where raising Siberian kittens has given me a wonderful chance to talk about ethics with Jamie, and help him clarify his own. He wrote a fabulous paper in third grade about whether it is right to use animals to make money, and under what conditions. His conclusion:  "Yes, but only if you treat them well and you use some of the money to make sure they have a better life." 

 

Siberian Gatos on Vaccines

We provide a low dose immunization between 10 days and 3 weeks of Heska Ultranasal FRCV. We immunize with Heska Ultranasal FRCVP between 8 and 10 weeks, usually when the kitten leaves our home. You are http://www92.hattrick.org/Club/Players/Player.aspx?playerId=310616828&TeamId=70452 responsible for getting a second FRCVP immunization at age 16 weeks amd again at age one year. 16 weeks is a good age for the preop for spaying or neutering. Get the immunization, make the spaying/neutering appointment for one week later. I like to see a chance for the cats` immune system to respond to the immunization before the operation. Discuss with your veterinarian the Calici Vax immunization from Fort Dodge for the new, highly virulent strain Calici virus especially if you ever let your cat go outdoors. Do not give this before 16 weeks.

For all indoor cats, there is little need for a rabies vaccine, unless you live in an area where bats or squirrels may get into the house. California does not require rabies vaccine but some states do; you are responsible to know if your state requires the rabies vaccine. If you believe your Siberian kitten or cat needs rabies vaccine, I recommend the Merial Purevax rabbies vaccine. Although many vets use rabies vaccine every year, I recommend using Merial Purevax rabies vaccine and never more ofthen than every three years. Since 2003, Merial has acknowledged this vaccines’ effectiveness given at every 3 year intervals. Here is a link to vaccine recommendations. Ours are modified off this for our kittens needs.

Cornell University is is a leading center of cat veterinary medicine in the US. They definitely approve of rabies immunizations. They state “Purevax R, Merial's non-adjuvant rabies product, can be given to kittens as early as 8 weeks of age. As of November 2003, this vaccine (along with all Purevax R brand vaccines) is recommended by Merial to be given every three years. However, because administration of rabies vaccines is a matter of local or county law, some areas will continue to require annual rabies vaccination.

We forbid FeLV/FIV immunizations (Feline Leukemia Virus and Feline Immune Virus = Feline AIDS). We forbid FIP vaccination. Feel free to ask me why.

Here are some more references regarding various vaccines and recommended guidelines (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), (9), and (10).

 

Neutering/Spaying

All our Siberian kittens are sold with a neutering/spaying contract. The Siberian kitten must be neutered/spayed before six months of age. We will send you the kitten's registration papers when we receive appropriate documentation from a licensed veterinarian that your Siberian kitten has been neutered/spayed before six months of age. If you fail to neuter the kitten by six months, ownership of the kitten and any progeny reverts to us. We are entitled to reasonable recovery costs also. Get your Siberian kitten neutered or spayed!. Please note that your female cat is best protected from mammary cancer if spayed before first heat.

 

Siberian Gatos Placement Policy

If at some point in your Siberian cat's life you can no longer own a cat, we expect the Siberian cat to be returned to us or we will assist in placing the cat. You may not sell, give away, release, euthanize or shelter your cat when your life has unexpected changes without permission from us. Contact us, we are not released from responsibility either.

 

 

Siberian Gatos Health Guarantee

We guarantee the health of our Siberian kittens. The immunizations will be up-to-date at the time of purchase and you will be given instructions for further care. We use an immunization protocol for our Siberian kittens similar to this < http://www.dvmvac.com> but somewhat less. Our kittens' parents and grandparents have been raised indoors in Siberian catteries, and tested for FIV, FLV, and Corona Virus, HCM, patellar luxation and hip dysplasia and found negative, as well as immunized. This is how we can guarantee their health. Only indoor cats can be kept free of diseases, as there are no vaccines for some of these lethal cat viruses.

We offer a genetic health guarantee on the life of the cat til age ten years from birth. If the cat dies from a genetic cause verified on autopsy by a veterinarian, we will reimburse the purchase price of the kitten or supply a similar kitten. We will cover a reasonable autopsy fee in the case that the cat died from a genetic cause before age ten.

We guarantee our kittens arrive healthy. All kittens are seen for a good health exam by a veterinarian between 8 and 9 weeks, usually a feline specialist at the Cat Hospital in Campbell. Documentation is provided. If the kitten gets sick contact us. Usually advice is all that is needed. If not, we will cover a veterinarian visit if needed in the first two weeks of arrival and approved in advance by us or our vet in we are unavailable. If you live in the Bay Area, the visit must be with the vet who gave the kitten its good health exam.

 

Pricing

Colorpoints are $1600-1700, Silvers are 1400-1450, tabbies are 1200-1250 and solids 1100-1150.

Second Kitten

Siberian kittens are happiest when they have company.  In order to make it possible to keep our kittens together,  currently we will sell the second kitten for $100 less if they come from the same litter only.

 

 

Allergy Testing

We advise allergy testing with our specific lines if you are interested in our kittens. Allergies can be line specific. We offer home visits to assess allergies. Appointments are usually at 4-6pm. Two different sorts of home visits are available, both by appointment only.

1. 20 minute to one hour visit in my home with the cats. Lots of cat dander present. This can be altered to a visit in your car with me and a cat or to a visit on my deck to get a lower exposure to allergens. You will be responsible for your own vaccuuming afterward. The first visit up to one hour is currently free. In my opinion, a twenty minute exposure to my house full of Siberian dander is completely adequate. However, allergic reactions should not be assessed until two hours after the visit.

2. Modified cats visit. If you wish to visit one cat modified to be maximally non-allergenic, I can Allerpet-C ONE cat and put ALL cats on allergy relief drops for 48 hours in advance of your visit. This will not alter accumulated dander in the house. $50 charge for a modified visit which does not apply towards the purchase price.

 

Samples of Cat Fur or Cat Bedding

We will mail out samples of Siberian cat fur for free in your own SASE only. We will mail out samples of Siberian cat bedding for $10 in your own SASE only. These are only to give you a piece of cloth that is impregnated with cat dander for you to try, it is not otherwise useful. Contact us for the snail mail address to send SASEs. Make sure your envelope is big enough for what you wish mailed back to you. Don't send two SASEs unless you wish two different things mailed back now.

Siberian Gatos Self Addressed Stamped Envelope Policy

All mail communications with us must include a SASE if you wish an answer or any documentation. I am disabled and this includes memory problems as well as physical problems. I am concerned that I will lose something really important if I set it down to look for a stamp and an envelope. This is solved if I require a SASE for any business correspondence.

Deposit and Waiting List

We are no longer accepting reservations until we have kittens born. At that point it will be announced on the website homepage and we will take the appropriate number only. It is hoped that this will lead to less long waits for those expecting kittens.

It will still not be a guarantee of a kitten soon as many things could happen. You will be required to put up your non refundable deposit of $100 at the time you are notified you can join the waiting list. You will be expected to pay for your kitten in full at age 8 weeks, or lose your spot for that litter.

In putting down a deposit you are agreeing to the terms of the sales contract and to contact us within 3 to 6 months, if you have not heard from us. In order for a deposit to be accepted you must fill out the following form and press the submit button.