POC E zine, Issue #003

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POC E-zine, Issue #003
May 01, 2009
Hello subscribers, I hope you are well,

I have just come back from the USA where I stayed with Ken and Helmi Flick in Bedford, which is a shortish distance from Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) airport. And I visited A1 Savannahs owned and run by Kathrin and Martin Stucki. They run a very impressive cattery. It is probably the best known cat breeding cattery in the world.

They have a large number of cats and the exotic Savannah cats that are for sale are simply magnificant and perhaps some of the best socialized domestic cats in the world. This is a testament to the wonderful socialization that Martin and Kathrin carry out with new born kittens. The first 6 months are critical in making sure that the cats, despite being wildcat hybrids, are able to naturally behave as true domestic cats.

f2 Savannah kitten playing with a Serval kitten
Socialized – Serval kitten playing with F2 Savannah kitten.
They hadn’t met before they started playing. See video.

Before writing this e-zine post I wrote a short article on How to Become a Cat Breeder. It addressed the ethical issues of cat breeding, which are more difficult to deal with than the actual breeding, I think. I don’t believe my visit to A1 Savannahs changed my views. Sure, A1 Savannahs is a business and a very successful one but I received the clear message during the visit that the cattery was built on a solid foundation of care and concern for the cats as a first priority. This attitude comes from Kathrin and Martin who are very international in their outlook. They are Swiss and live in the USA. They travel widely and sell their cats worldwide. I think a breeder needs to look at the big picture to be as successful as the Stuckis are.

f2 Savannah being bottle fed by Martin Stucki
Martin socializing this top quality F2 Savannah kitten
that will be worth about $30,000 one day.

As Martin said, cat breeding is basically a simple process. But you have to think long term to develop the lines that produce the great quality cats at A1 Savannahs. This means perhaps a 15 year vision and a large number of cats to allow the breeder to make choices as to which cat to breed with which cat. This is a gradual refinement it seems to me until the breeder has a combination of female and male cat that parent the best quality Savannah cats. This family serves as a model for other lines and the cattery ends up producing more fine cats.

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