So You Want To Adopt
Things To Think About
Please find below a general overview of what to expect when thinking of buying one of our kittens. First and foremost:
All pet kittens will be altered BEFORE leaving us!
Please DO NOT contact us if you’re looking for a breeding Ragdoll. It is a huge responsibility and a great deal of work being an ethical breeder. Unfortunately, many people greatly underestimate both the amount of work and the financial commitment this entails- and the animals suffer for it. We only work with a very small group of trusted friends that share our beliefs and goals. We do NOT provide stud service.
With that out of the way…
IT IS OUR BELIEF that our babies have the best chance of a healthy, happy, forever home if both we and potential adopters carefully consider both the kittens’ personalities and the homes to which they’ll be going. While you may have a “Wish List” of what you’re looking for, we hope you’ll keep our recommendations in mind when choosing a new family member. Finding the right Ragdoll is very much a partnership. ( Please read below under ” Waiting List ” before contacting us ).
YOU CAN EXPECT US to describe any baby we offer as honestly as possible. We will also try to fit their personalities as best as we can to their new homes. Ragdolls are lovely cats, but they are NOT miracle cats! Not all Ragdolls are floppy. Not all Ragdolls can handle busy homes or small children. Some of our babies are bold and outgoing, able to keep up with a more energetic home. Some are more shy or reserved and might be better suited to a quieter, slower life style.
YOU NEED to be prepared to properly care for your new kitten. You need to know how to integrate a new baby into the house with the least stress possible. You need to be aware that some things change depending on the age and stage of development of your kitten. This includes feeding a quality diet appropriate to the age of the cat. We cannot emphasize enough how vitally important an investment diet is to the life-long health of your Ragdoll. They tend to be a large breed (though females can be smaller), and they continue to grow for as long as 3 years. A lack or imbalance of vital nutrients now can have dramatically negative consequences later.
Also, you need to provide regular veterinary exams and vaccinations to help prevent problems and to catch them early if they do occur. For example, did you know that the reason kitten vaccinations are given as a series is because of something called Maternal Antibody Interference? Maternal antibodies are passed in Mom’s milk to help protect her infants. They don’t last long but while still active, those same antibodies can also block a vaccination from working. The problem is there’s no set time for when that guard comes down. Vaccinations are given as a series, generally 3-4 weeks apart, to try to “bridge” the time between Mom’s protection and when the kitten becomes vulnerable to developing a disease. It’s also important to know a vaccination takes time to stimulate protection- your baby is NOT wearing armor the minute you leave your vet’s office! Please be especially sure to discuss this with your vet if there’s a possibility of contact with other cats during this very critical time. There are many different diseases and types of vaccines (killed, modified live, injectable, intranasal), way beyond the scope of what we can cover here, that may be best suited to your own situation.
WAITING LIST: If you’d like to be contacted when there are babies (or retired adults) available, please let us know. Oakside is a small cattery and only raises a few litters a year. We try to match our babies to the homes we feel will best suit their individual personalities. When contacting Oakside, please tell us a little about yourself- children, other pets, etc. A shyer or extra “soft” kitten might be overwhelmed in a very busy home. An extra bold kitten might be perfect for a rowdy house with lots of traffic and energetic ( but kind! ) children. The same kitten might not suit a youngster who wants a cuddler. Every kitten has it’s own unique temperament. We need to know YOUR expectations when matching our babies to their future homes.
THE PRICE OF OUR PET KITTENS includes: spay or neuter, FVRC-P and Rabies vaccinations (if age appropriate), routine worming, Feline leukemia testing, exam & Florida health certificate. OCCASIONALLY we might have an older kitten or young adult looking for a special home. We do not guarantee any of our kittens will be show quality but if one of our babies turn out extra nice, we’d LOVE for you to take them out to the shows!
DEPOSITS are due when you pick your kitten and you will need to pick up your baby in person. We do NOT ship kittens. We think it’s very important that you pick out your kitten in person. You may think you want a blue bicolor girl but another baby may be the one that really speaks to your heart- or perhaps none do. If so, that’s fine. We want our babies in their forever homes, not an impulse buy that will wind up being palmed off when the excitement wears off. PLEASE understand that this is a forever commitment. We expect you to provide an excellent, loving home for your new family member for it’s lifetime, not just through the “kitten cute” phase.
WE RESERVE THE RIGHT, at our sole discretion and without penalty, to refuse to place a kitten at any time if we feel it’s not in it’s best interest. If a deposit has been paid, it would of course be promptly refunded.
OUR KITTENS ARE ALTERED BEFORE LEAVING US. Please do NOT ask us to waive this requirement.
KITTENS WILL BE READY TO COME HOME somewhere between 12-16 weeks old, depending on their weight and time needed to recuperate from being altered (big boys will recuperate much faster than little girls). Especially for our girls, we’d prefer them to have time to heal in familiar surroundings before going to a new home. Ragdolls are a large, slow-maturing breed and babies need time to be ready to cope with a world without mom and littermates. This also gives us time to be sure they’re growing appropriately and to start their vaccinations.
YOUR KITTEN WILL COME TO YOU with age-appropriate vaccinations and will be spayed or neutered. Florida Statute 828.29 requires that any cat or dog sold in the state must have minimum vaccinations for their age and be accompanied by a Florida Health Certificate, completed by a licensed veterinarian, verifying the animal has had a health exam and has been tested/treated for specific disease or parasites.
The link can be found here: http://www.freshfromflorida.com/ai/main/pet_main.shtml
HEALTH GUARANTEE: Our guarantee is a simple one based on what we feel is common sense. We would never knowingly sell a sick kitten. We also expect you’d always feed the best diet and provide for the safety of your new family member for it’s lifetime. Still, conflict can arise if something goes wrong. These are living creatures and in spite of the best planning and care from us and you, bad things can and do happen. If it does, we want to have a fair and compassionate resolution based on clear expectations.
Our babies are sold with the following understanding- any changes or additions to our contract MUST be in writing, signed by both buyer and seller:
1) Our kittens will receive all appropriate care under a licensed veterinarian. We do NOT administer our own vaccinations, we want them to be seen multiple times to keep an eye on their health and development. We do everything in our power to spot any trouble early and to resolve it with professional help if it does occur.
2) YOU are expected to be very proactive yourself and to look carefully for signs of trouble BEFORE you leave with your kitten. Whether ours or someone else’s, your kitten should NOT have excessive sneezing, weepy eyes, fleas or flea dirt, or a dirty bottom. A little sneezing isn’t uncommon, especially post alter surgery and with the stress of a new home, but thick discharge from the eyes or nose, or a weepy, red, half closed eye isn’t normal.
3) You MUST take your baby to a licensed vet within 72 hours of leaving here- failure to do so will void our health guarantee !! If anything SERIOUS is found wrong, we will take the baby back for a full refund of it’s purchase price + taxes paid. The baby must be returned immediately if you wish a refund.
4) We do NOT authorize any treatment nor will reimburse your expenses if you choose to initiate any treatment without our written ( or texted ) consent. It’s not uncommon for a stressed young baby to get a LITTLE sneezy or run a slightly higher temperature when it’s stressed by a new home but neither of us want that to progress to anything more serious. At the same time, we have no control over what happens once a baby leaves, nor of your choice of vet. It is very rare that a perfectly healthy appearing kitten will be seriously ill just days later. A vet check is common sense all the way around. Please call us IMMEDIATELY with any concerns.
WE DO NOT ALLOW DECLAWING OF OUR RAGDOLLS!! Sisal rope toys and posts are usually pretty effective alternatives. Our babies start having their nails clipped at a young age and we encourage you to make this a regular part of their grooming routine.
HYPERTROPHIC CARDIOMYOPATHY (HCM). Our foundation cats were DNA tested Negative for both identified mutations (Maine Coon and Ragdoll) of hereditary HCM before becoming part of our breeding program.
SALES TAX. We are registered with the Florida Dept of Revenue and are required to collect and report Florida Sales Tax at the rate in effect for the Florida County where the kitten is delivered/picked up. In Marion County, our current tax rate is 7 %