Vet accuses Taylor Swift of not being a true cat lover

On his TikTok page, Ben the Vet said: ‘I’m a vet, and in my opinion, you cannot call yourself a true cat lover and have a Scottish fold cat.”

Ben does not like the Scottish Fold for health reasons. Screenshot.
Until September 7th I will give 10 cents to an animal charity for every comment. It is a way to help animal welfare without much effort at no cost. Comments help this website too, which is about animal welfare.

Ben is a well-known TikTok favourite and he spells out a lot of wisdom in his videos. Always animal welfare underpins his statements. In this video which I have mentioned before as have many other website authors, he argues that you can’t be a true cat lover if you purchase a Scottish Fold as this cat breed – under German legislation and philosophy – is the product of torture breeding (with other breeds such as the Persian and Sphynx), which means selective breeding (artificial selection) focusing on extreme and an unnatural appearance to entice customers at the expense of health potentially causing pain and discomfort in the cat.

Note: the Instagram post below from Taylor Swift’s feed may change or fail to work one day and if that has happened, I’m sorry but I can’t control its existence of how Instagram makes it work.

He is making a bold statement which in effect states that Taylor Swift – who has two Scottish Folds – cannot be a true cat lover, which will upset her no end. She considers herself a cat lover, I am sure. Although I am also pretty sure that one reason for her buying purebred cats (the other is a Ragdoll called Benjamin) is to enhance her appeal to her billions of fans.

RELATED: Taylor Swift’s Scottish Fold cats are likely to be in chronic pain

There is nothing like pretty cat – even if it is inherently unhealthy – to make yourself more attractive. That formula also works for men. Cat appeal is a tool to be employed by those who rely on adoration to be successful.

RELATED: 9 reasons why Taylor Swift is so successful (the 9th is her cats!)

Below is another video by Ben in which he refers to the Scottish Fold as one of four breeds he cannot support.

4 cat breeds that Ben the vet dislikes and the reasons why

In the other video he says these things:

‘Because surely if you love cats you want your cat to be able to run and jump without difficulty and not be in constant pain.

‘And Scottish fold cats do experience more pain than other cats because they are plagued with arthritis.’

To back up his claims, Ben shared x-rays of a Scottish fold’s limbs, saying: ‘You probably don’t have to be a vet to see that there’s some abnormality here.

‘You can see around the joints… lots of extra new bone formation and that is a sign of severe arthritis. This arthritis is the price these cats pay for looking cute. 

‘The reason these cats have folded ears is because they have a genetic mutation which means the cartilage in their ears is defective.

‘It’s weak and that’s why the ear flap can’t support itself and folds over. 

‘But they also have cartilage in all of their joints and that cartilage is also defective.

‘This arthritis is painful and incurable and I’ve seen two or three-year-old Scottish fold cats that are crippled.’

The issue here is also that people who purchase purebred cats sometimes (often?) don’t really dig around to better understand the health issues which impinge on the cost of maintenance issues before buying. This is because people are enamoured with appearance. The human world is a visual one unlike the cat whose world is both visual and based on smells and sounds. These are equal senses for the cat. For humans vision is predominant.

Sometimes people who adopt purebreds realise later on that the cost of caregiving can be prohibitive and they discard the animal at the RSCPA in the UK. Doing research beforehand and focusing on the important issues is important.

Purebreds need health insurance while random bred cats don’t. Anyone who takes out a pet health insurance policy for their moggie is subsidizing owners of unhealthy purebred cats such as the Sphynx, Maine Coon, Bengal and Scottish Fold, to name three. There are more.

What are the symptoms of osteochondrodysplasia in domestic cats?

Osteochondrodysplasia is a genetic disorder that affects the development of bones and cartilage in cats. It is most commonly seen in Scottish Fold cats, where the same genetic mutation that causes their folded ears also affects their skeletal development.

The symptoms of osteochondrodysplasia can vary depending on the severity of the condition. Some cats may only have mild symptoms, while others may be severely affected. Here are some of the most common symptoms:

  • Reluctance to move or jump: This is often one of the first signs of osteochondrodysplasia. Affected cats may become less active and playful, and they may be hesitant to jump or climb.
  • Abnormal posture or walk: Cats with osteochondrodysplasia may have a stiff or stilted gait, or they may hold their limbs in an abnormal position.
  • Lameness: This is a common symptom of osteochondrodysplasia, and it can affect one or more limbs.
  • Skeletal deformities: Affected cats may have short, thick tails, misshapen bones and joints, and thickened feet with splayed toes.
  • Decreased joint flexibility: Cats with osteochondrodysplasia may have difficulty bending their joints, which can make it painful for them to move around.
  • Fused bones/joints (ankylosis): In some cases, the bones in a cat’s joints may fuse together, making them completely immobile.
  • Reclusive behavior: Some cats with osteochondrodysplasia may become withdrawn and reclusive due to pain and discomfort.
  • Decreased appetite: Pain and discomfort can make it difficult for cats with osteochondrodysplasia to eat.
  • Poor grooming behavior: Cats with osteochondrodysplasia may not be able to groom themselves properly due to pain or difficulty moving around.

If you think your cat may have osteochondrodysplasia, it is important to see a veterinarian for diagnosis and treatment. There is no cure for osteochondrodysplasia, but there are treatments that can help to manage the pain and discomfort associated with the condition.

What can cat breeders do to minimise the occurrence of osteochondrodysplasia in their cats?

Unfortunately, Osteochondrodysplasia in cats, particularly in Scottish Folds, is a bit trickier to prevent through breeding compared to some other conditions. Here’s why:

  • Genetic Root: The folded ears and the abnormal cartilage development are caused by the same dominant gene. So breeding for folded ears automatically increases the risk of Osteochondrodysplasia.

However, there are still steps responsible cat breeders can take to minimize its occurrence:

  • Avoiding Fold-to-Fold Breeding: This is the most important step. Breeders should never breed two Scottish Fold cats together. Matings should involve one Scottish Fold parent and a Scottish Straight (with normal ears) to reduce the chance of kittens inheriting two copies of the fold gene.
  • Genetic Testing: While not yet widespread, some genetic tests are being developed to identify cats carrying the Osteochondrodysplasia gene. This could allow breeders to avoid breeding carriers altogether.
  • Transparency and Education: Responsible breeders should be transparent about the health risks associated with folded ears and Osteochondrodysplasia. They should educate potential owners about the potential challenges and the importance of adopting Scottish Straights if they are not prepared for the possibility of Osteochondrodysplasia.

Alternative Approach: Some breeders are focusing on developing a “folded-ear look” in Scottish Straights through selective breeding for a slightly folded ear without the underlying cartilage abnormality. This is a controversial approach, but it could offer a possibility for people who love the folded-ear aesthetic while minimizing Osteochondrodysplasia risk.

Ultimately, the most effective way to prevent Osteochondrodysplasia completely would be to discourage breeding for folded ears altogether. However, the steps above can help responsible breeders minimize the risk while the breed continues to exist.

What cat breeds are predisposed to inheriting osteochondrodysplasia in cats?

Currently, the only cat breed predisposed to inheriting Osteochondrodysplasia is the Scottish Fold. This is because the genetic mutation responsible for their folded ears also disrupts cartilage development throughout the body, leading to the condition.

It’s important to note that breeding practices are crucial here. Mating two Scottish Folds significantly increases the chance of kittens inheriting two copies of the fold gene, resulting in severe Osteochondrodysplasia. Responsible breeders will avoid this by breeding Scottish Folds with Scottish Straights (cats with normal ears) to reduce the risk.

Other cat breeds, like Persians or Maine Coons, do not have folded ears or the genetic mutation that causes Osteochondrodysplasia. So, they are not predisposed to inheriting the condition.

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