Research before you buy or adopt. Different cats have different individual requirements, which may vary greatly depending on their age, temperament, and breed.
If you do decide to get a kitten or a cat, why not consider contacting your local animal rescue/rehoming centre. There are thousands of loving cats all over the UK who are waiting for a home.
Avoid sellers such as pet shops and garden centres
Make sure you get a healthy cat. Always ask for a copy of its medical records, including vaccination certificate and records of worming and flea treatment. Ensure that registration papers, the parents’ hereditary disease screening certificates and microchip documentation are in order.
Buying a kitten. Ideally you should see the kitten with its mother where it was bred and check that the facilities are clean and the litter appears alert and healthy. A kitten should be sociable and alert with bright eyes and no visible health problems. You should be able to handle the kittens freely under supervision. Don’t buy a kitten that is less than 8 weeks old.
If the cat is over 4 months old, check if it has been neutered. Kittens can get pregnant from 4 months of age. Related cats will mate if not neutered.
Ask where the cat came from. If your chosen cat does not originate from the place of purchase, ask about where it did come from, and try to obtain its previous history.
Ideally all cats would be allowed access to outdoors to express their natural behaviour.
If you already have one or more cats think carefully before getting another. Cats are naturally solitary animals, which means they usually prefer to live alone.
Microchip your kitten or cat as this provides a safe and permanent method of identification
Consider insuring your kitten or cat in case of the need for expensive and potentially life-saving veterinary treatment.
Register your new pet with a vet as soon as possible and book them in for regular health checks
Sellers offering to post on medical or pedigree paperwork to you after you have left
Sellers offering to meet you ‘halfway’ to save you a journey. They probably just don’t want you to know where they live!
Sellers advertising “pedigree” cats with no evidence that the cat is registered with a Governing body (such as registration papers)
Sellers claim that the kitten must be sold that day as they (the seller) are going away on holiday or for a family emergency. This is a tactic to put pressure on the buyer