Your Decision Is Made – Now What?
You have decided on the breed. You have the time, energy, and inclination to invest in a new cat. You have contacted a breeder who is willing to meet with you to discuss adopting a cat. When I adopted my Himalayan, I had a friend who knew a breeder. Between them they made most of the arrangements, including the actual selection of the cat, but I suggest you get involved in the decision making process yourself.
$ Meet the breeder in person. Ask general questions about the breeding operation he/she is running, as well as specific questions about the cat you’re considering. Visit the breeder’s place of business before you make your decision. Seeing the conditions the animal has been kept in will give you a better idea of what you might be up against regarding physical, social, and behavioral elements.
$ Arrange to have the cat neutered or spayed before you take possession. Most breeders will require this, to prevent you from deciding to breed the cat yourself. There are actually at least two reasons why this is a good idea: First of all, since the breeder has decided that the cat is past prime breeding age, it’s probably not a good idea for you to breed it any further. Secondly, the breeders don’t want any more competition than they already have. But I think that the best reason is so that your new cat doesn’t associate you with going to the veterinarian. That memory belongs to their old life.
$ Get the registration papers for the cat when you pick it up. (I didn’t do this, and spent the next several months trying to get the papers.) The papers may be needed if you are going to travel to a foreign country with the cat. As well, if you choose to register your name as the new owner, it’s your Bill of Sale.
$ Get the medical records when you pick the cat up. (Again, I didn’t do this, and wasn’t able to get them later. Since I’d already bugged the breeder to get the registration papers, I didn’t push for the medical records.) These records are important as an immunization record, or if the cat develops a medical condition where knowing their medical history would be an advantage.