Frequently Asked Questions
It has been suggested in my questionnaire feed back that I have kitten care instructions or FAQ's on my website. So I hope you all find this useful... questions and answers are in no particular order.
Q. What are the main physical and temperament differences between Abyssinians & Ocicats?
A. Ocicats are usually a more muscular cat, they are a surprising weight for their size. Ocicats will talk with a huskie meow where as Abys are mostly quiet.
Most Abyssinians are fearless which means they are not good with roads and most Ocicats are more fearful of roads & cars.
Neutered adult male Abys are usually approx 5 kg - spayed females are approx 4kg.
Neutered adult male Ocicats are usually approx 6 kg - spayed females are approx 4.5kg.
Q. I am trying to choose the breed that is right for me, what are Abyssinians & Ocicats like?
A. My Abys & Ocicats are affectionate, busy, playful, people cats that like to be part of the family. Don't expect them to sit on the couch and look pretty or stay in one room and only come out when you want them too. They love to interact with their owners and really enjoy snuggling up with you in bed at night.
Q. Do I need to pay a deposit to secure a kitten?
A. Yes, a $200 deposit is required to secure your kitten once we know a suitable kitten is born and all the details are sorted out. This deposit is non refundable if you change your mind.
Q. How often do Abyssinians & Ocicats shed their fur?
A. They usually shed their fur seasonally.
Q. What is best to use to keep shedding to a minimum?
A. I use Flea Comb's regularly they are great for getting rid of loose fur. I also use a Zoom Groom once in Summer.
Q. I am trying to decide whether to keep my kitten as an indoor only cat or let it be indoor and outdoors, what do you think?
A. My Abyssinians & Ocicats are suited to both situations but they MUST always be kept indoors at night. Having had an Ocicat attacked & killed by the neighbours dog I am all for indoor only cats but I do often suggest that people build a sanctuary type enclosure from their house for their cats to have safe outdoor access if their house is suitable for one & they are able to do this. A good website with photos and ideas is http://www.catsofaustralia.com/cat-enclosures.htm
Q. My partner & I work full time should I consider having 2 kittens?
A. Yes, it is really nice for the kitten to have company. I have sold many kittens in pairs.
Q. What is the freight cost from you to any where in NZ?
A. We send kittens from Palmerston North Airport. The cost of freight using Air NZ is now $110.00 to send a kitten/cat anywhere in the North Island and $175.00 to send a kitten/cat to the South Island. If you are in Nelson there is a new service Origin Air direct from Palmerston North to Nelson and it is $95. I do sell airline approved cages at a reasonable cost also.
Q. Can I come and visit before I decide if the breed is right for me?
A. We have no problem with people visiting to meet the breeds but after some interesting & sometimes unpleasant experiences I do have some new rules around visiting. A visit must be pre arranged for a time and day that is convenient for everyone. I will email people my pet kitten agreement in advance of their visit to ensure they are happy with it, so nobody's time is wasted if they don't like any of the clauses. I will also provide kitten prices prior to the visit. I ask all visitors to please wear clean clothes that haven't been in contact with any other animals. This is for the protection of my cats, bugs are easily transferred and it's not worth the risk. Thank you for your understanding.
Q. Do Abyssinians & Ocicats require any special diet?
A. No, but I do recommend that you feed them a premium dry food & also canned and raw meat each day.
Q. Do Aby and Ocicat kittens get on well with children?
A. Yes, but it is important that you supervise young children with your new kitten, also that you teach them how to correctly handle the kitten and that the kitten gets time out away from the children to sleep.
Q. Is it safe to have kittens early de-sexed & what are the benefits?
A. Yes. Early de-sexing has become a very common practice in the last 10 years. Kittens recover much quicker after surgery and you don't have to worry about your young girl coming into season and having an unwanted pregnancy or your young boy getting mature and spraying every where. I find kittens often grow bigger too. There are many articles relating to the safety of early de-sexing available on the internet.
Q. I have heard lately that it is a good idea to have pets micro chipped if they have indoor/outdoor access during the day, what are your thoughts about this?
A. I think it is a good idea & I can arrange for my vet to microchip your new kitten at the first vaccination (at your expense) or I recommend people arrange for their vet to microchip their kitten at the time of the 2nd vaccination.
Q. What do I get with my new kitten?
A. Your new kitten comes with kitten care information, a computer generated 4 generation pedigree, vaccination card, 30 days free pet insurance, 2kg bag of dry food, discount voucher and information and one of it's favourite toys.
Q. Are there things I should watch out for or expect when buying a kitten?
A. You might like to follow this link to tips on buying a kitten http://abyrose.orconhosting.net.nz/tips_when_buying.htm
All of our breeding Abyssinians are DNA tested for Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency (Pk-def) and are negative. Pk-def is a hereditary form of anaemia in Abyssinians & Somalis.
There is a DNA test for Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) which is a hereditary disease of the retina in the eye that eventually leads to permanent blindness, I have tested all my Abys & Ocicats for and they are all negative (normal). Our breeding cats knees and all kittens are checked regularly for Patella Luxation by my vet.
I also blood group test my Abyssinians to check the blood type. My Abys and Ocicats are tested for FIV & FeLV and PCR tested for Upper Respiratory Infections from time to time to ensure negative status. It is very important to me that I am breeding from the healthiest possible adult cats.
Since Feb 2009 I PCR test my breeding cats for Tritrichomonas foetus. T foetus is a parasite that causes diarrhoea in cats. I breed from negative adult cats so that I know that no kitten leaves here with Tritrichomonas foetus.
From 23rd March 2010 I have had all of my adult Ocicats hearts scanned for Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM). You can view results & date of the scan on the "My Ocicats" page.
While it costs a lot of money for testing any good ethical breeder should be testing for things within their breed/s to ensure they are selling healthy problem free kittens as pets :-)
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