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Shelter Kittens with Savannahs

MattM

Savannah Super Cat
#1
My Fiancee and I are taking on full time jobs, and we won't be able to spend as much time as we have recently enjoyed with our current Savannah kitten. We can't afford another Savannah, but we were thinking about adopting a kitten from our local shelter. I meet with my Vet in two weeks, and I will bring the question up again, but does anyone have any concerns or advice they might be able to offer me?

My biggest concern is the possibility of the shelter kitten I bring home may give my Savannah something he isn't prepared for yet. I'm not clear on the details, but I believe their animals are screened before putting them up for adoption. Do I need to wait for all of the immunizations to be completed before I bring home another kitten?
 

Pam Flachs

Savannah Super Cat
#2
I think that's a great idea, as long as you find another kitten with tons of energy!

Talk to your vet first; he may know of some kittens available from another client, and by all means wait until your Savannah baby has had all his vaccines.

If you do decide on a shelter kitten, ask for references from others. Some shelters are notorious for adopting out sick kittens and cats. Be sure the new kitten has been vet checked and has had its vaccines and preferably already spayed or neutered, too. It should have all the criteria to meet when your were looking for a Savannah (healthy coat and skin, clear eyes and nose, clean ears, normal poop, flea and worm free, has a negative FIV/FLEV status, etc).

Of course any other kitten you get will have to be quarantined from your SV. I'd even suggest taking a shelter kitten into your own vet for a check before bringing it to your home, even if the shelter says they have been "screened".

I'll also add that any shoes you wear while visiting a shelter be left outside when your return home, to prevent picking up any possible germs.....

Congratulations on the new jobs!
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
#3
Getting a kitten from a shelter means that you have to be extra-good about adhering to quarantining that new kitten for at least two weeks. Shelters do great work, but the nature of the operation means that diseases are common there... so don't be surprised if any kitten you bring home breaks with an infection in that quarantine period.

Something to ask about, how old was that kitten when they got it? If a feral kitten that was trapped at a couple months of age, then you might find that kitten is not going to be a cuddly puss no matter how they tell you it will warm up to you...I had a friend adopt two that thought they would get friendlier... but feral kittens can remain quite standoffish if they were not trapped and fostered at a very early age.
 
#4
Another option is a rescue baby versus a shelter baby. Here- locally- the shelter is dripping with germs. When we did more all-cat rescue, we took three cats out of the shelter directly and all three died with vet care within 10 days of pulling them. They weren't kittens either- but adults.

ONE cat actually did survive- but we had to quarantine him for- gosh- like 4 months? He had a wicked URI, but at least he made it. We stopped pulling from shelters then- broke my heart- but I couldn't do it anymore.

Not saying all shelters are this bad- we've seen the worse here.

Meanwhile, we have local rescues that are at Petsmart/Petco and their cats/kittens are much, much healthier. You would still be saving a life, but may reduce the disease issue. Still follow quarantine and still follow the other advice given...
 

Jason E

Savannah Super Cat
#5
Another option is a rescue baby versus a shelter baby. Here- locally- the shelter is dripping with germs. When we did more all-cat rescue, we took three cats out of the shelter directly and all three died with vet care within 10 days of pulling them. They weren't kittens either- but adults.

ONE cat actually did survive- but we had to quarantine him for- gosh- like 4 months? He had a wicked URI, but at least he made it. We stopped pulling from shelters then- broke my heart- but I couldn't do it anymore.

Not saying all shelters are this bad- we've seen the worse here.

Meanwhile, we have local rescues that are at Petsmart/Petco and their cats/kittens are much, much healthier. You would still be saving a life, but may reduce the disease issue. Still follow quarantine and still follow the other advice given...

When looking for a rescue cat with my brother we found that of the 3 shelters at least 2 seemed fairly poor when it came to living conditions while one was excellent and the kittens/cats were all very happy and healthy. However, after several trips to petsmart/petco on the weekends(when they generally took the kittens/cats/dogs) to be displayed, it was clear these animals are fostered by people that love them and seemed very healthy. This is how my brother got his kitten and he came very healthy and incredibly well trained, as far as kittens can be. Never jumps on the counters, we've moved the litter box a ton and he never fails to use it. I think in the end it's a mixed bag, but its worth it to try and give a kitten or cat a great home.
 

Sue

Savannah Super Cat
#6
My daughter adopted a shelter kitten from Petsmart/Petco. Even though the people from the shelter claimed that the kitten was healthy, it was not. She had the kitten at the vets in less than a week and a very large vet bill to pay. Sue
 

admin

Paige
Staff member
#8
Here's our rescue kitty (1 year) and our Savannah baby. We also have a 3 year old Bengal. We got him from a local rescue organization who pulled him from a shelter, made sure he was healthy and then adopted him out. We got him at 3 months old, and he's actually had less issues than our other 2!

Awww...what a great photo! I love your rescue kitty (and savannah, of course)!