Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Kitten Packs... How Much???

Awwww... Wendell/Jacob and his mouse! I love this pic! Jacob will be three soon, scary.
So, I was trawling through the net the other day, as I often do when I'm *ahem* supposed to be studying, and I came across this thread http://www.petforums.co.uk/cat-breeding/17442-what-do-you-put-your-kitten-packs.html. It was quite a read.

My goodness, but some of those packs are flash!!! Cat carriers, cat trees and scratchers, track toys, food to last a month... I began to feel quite despondent!

Common sense reasserted itself, however. To start with, many of these breeders were in the US, where $800 for a kitten is the norm, and many go for more,this equates to at least £500 sterling. I charge £425. Some breeds go for more. If you are charging $2000 for a Bengal kitten, which costs no more to raise than an $850 Tonk, then you can jolly well afford to throw in a cat carrier and slightly fancier toys!

It was an education finding out how much certain cats go for on the other side of the pond, it really was...

Also, it's a bit weird. I don't know about you, but when I got my first kittens, Ava and Sofia, part of the pleasure for me was picking out a new carrier, food bowls, bed, toys... I wouldn't have wanted the breeder to do this for me. I find that kind of weird, actually! Admittedly I was like a neurotic new mother (not much changes then, haha!) but these things are so personal aren't they?

I did notice that many of the bigger packs though were bulked up by the free samples breeders can access if they belong to certain clubs... you order a minimum amount of food from them a year and in return they advertise to your kittens' new families by sending free samples and then bombarding them regularly with junk mail. Hmmm. (although I do sign up for the free insurance so??)

There are lots of these schemes in the US and several over here too, most wanting you to breed a certain number of litters a year to qualify, which I feel is equally insidious. To the best of my knowledge, James Wellbeloved do not have such a scheme- if they do I don't belong to it!

Really, am I missing the point here? A kitten pack is meant to provide a few, familiar things for transition, a few toys similar to ones he's already played with, food his tummy is used to, a blanket that smells comforting? Surely giving kitty twelve different foods over the course of his first week is just  going to give him bellyache? Sure they might be free, but???

Now, I could bump the up the price for a kitten, and have a flashier pack, but...having thought about it, I'm happy with how we do things here. Flash isn't the goal, or rather it shouldn't be. The only thing I'm changing this year, and which I did find useful from the topic, is I'm going to include a blanket, which the kittens have used and therefore smells comforting to them. I like that idea and think it will be a good thing to include. But I'm not planning on including cat baskets any time soon!!!

What do you think? What is the point of a kitten pack? Did your Indikon pack make you feel short changed? Was there anything you expected to see in it that wasn't?

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