What Do Breeders Do With Unsold Kittens?

Breeders play a pivotal role in the world of pet breeding, carefully selecting and nurturing animals to ensure the continuation of specific breeds. However, the question of what happens to unsold kittens in the possession of these breeders remains largely shrouded in uncertainty. It’s important to note that reputable breeders demonstrate a profound commitment to the well-being of their animals, going above and beyond to ensure their future. They embrace the responsibility of finding suitable homes for every single kitten they produce, or alternatively, assume the lifelong duty of providing a loving and permanent home themselves. These breeders understand that circumstances can arise which prevent potential owners from taking home a kitten they initially intended to purchase. Consequently, they exercise caution and compassion, never engaging in breeding unless they’re prepared to stand as guardian for the entire litter, regardless of financial considerations or market demands.

How Long Do Breeders Keep Kittens?

At around 4 months old, kittens have already gone through a crucial period of growth and development. During this time, breeders prioritize providing them with a nurturing environment where they can learn important social skills from their mother and littermates. Unlike puppies, kittens tend to socialize at a slower pace, and the extended period of close interaction with their feline family benefits their overall well-being.

During these months, the kittens not only bond with their littermates but also establish trust and familiarity with their human caretakers. This process helps them become more adaptable and confident in new environments, which eases the transition to their forever homes.

Additionally, by the age of 4 months, kittens have typically received most of their essential vaccinations. These vaccinations protect them against a wide array of diseases and ensure that they’re in good health when they leave the breeders care. It also provides potential owners with peace of mind, knowing that their new feline companion is protected against common illnesses and infections.

They can assess the kittens physical health, temperament, and potential for breeding or showing purposes. This evaluation period helps breeders make informed decisions regarding the placement of each kitten, taking into consideration their unique qualities and suitability for specific homes or breeding programs.

Lastly, breeders understand the importance of responsible pet ownership and seek to ensure that the kittens theyve bred are placed in loving and suitable homes. By holding onto the kittens until 4 months old, breeders have the opportunity to thoroughly vet potential adopters, verifying that they possess the knowledge, resources, and commitment necessary to care for the kittens. This meticulous process ultimately benefits both the kittens and their future owners, minimizing the likelihood of rehoming or abandonment and promoting long-lasting companionship.

During this crucial socialization period between 9 and 16 weeks, kittens learn important skills and behaviors from their mothers and siblings. While kittens can be fully weaned by 8 weeks, allowing them to stay with their mamas for up to 12 weeks can provide significant advantages in their overall development and well-being.

Is It Better to Get a Kitten at 8 Weeks or 12 Weeks?

When considering the ideal age to get a kitten, the question of whether it’s better to bring them home at 8 weeks or 12 weeks arises. While kittens can be fully weaned by 8 weeks, there are significant advantages to leaving them with their mothers for up to 12 weeks. Dr. Kornreich, a respected expert in the field, explains that this is due to the fact that kittens go through another critical socialization period around the age of 9 weeks, which extends until approximately week 16.

During this extended period, kittens have the opportunity to learn vital social and behavioral skills from their mother and littermates. This socialization helps them develop appropriate communication skills, essential for their interaction with other cats and even humans as they grow older. It aids in teaching them boundaries and proper play behavior, minimizing the likelihood of aggressive tendencies later in life. Kittens raised with their mothers are more likely to exhibit desirable traits such as confidence, curiosity, and adaptability.

Additionally, staying with their mothers for an extended period allows kittens to receive important immunological benefits from nursing. Mother cats pass on crucial antibodies to their kittens through their milk, providing them with a stronger immune system that can protect them against various infections and diseases. This boost in immunity is particularly vital for kittens, whose immune systems are still developing and are more vulnerable than those of adult cats.

Furthermore, staying with their mothers for an extra few weeks ensures that kittens receive proper nutrition and are physically ready for the challenges of transitioning to solid food. This period allows them to refine their eating skills, as well as providing an opportunity for their teeth and jaws to develop fully. This ensures that they can consume a well-balanced diet and maintain good oral health as they grow into adulthood.

The Importance of Early Socialization for Kittens and How It Impacts Their Behavior as Adults

Early socialization plays a crucial role in shaping a kitten’s behavior as they grow into adult cats. It’s imperative to expose kittens to various positive experiences and interactions during their early developmental stages, typically between two to seven weeks of age. This includes introducing them to different people, animals, environments, and everyday sights and sounds.

By offering this early socialization, kittens develop vital skills and behaviors such as proper play, exploration, and communication. They also learn to adjust to new experiences and develop a confident and well-adjusted personality. Kittens that are adequately socialized tend to be more comfortable and friendly around people, making them easier to handle and less likely to display fear or aggression as adults.

In contrast, kittens that are deprived of early socialization may develop fearful and anxious behaviors, leading to potential behavioral issues in adulthood. They may exhibit aggression, fear, or become excessively shy or skittish. Such cats may struggle to adapt to novelty and may experience difficulties in forming social connections with humans and other animals.

Overall, early socialization is vital for kittens’ mental and emotional well-being, helping them build a solid foundation for positive adult behavior.

If there are cats at PetSmart that don’t sell due to defects or unexpected errors, the company has a protocol in place to ensure these pets are taken care of. Instead of being left without a home, the cats are usually adopted out to interested customers or PetSmart associates. In the case of baby cats, they’re kept until it’s safe to find them a suitable home. PetSmart prioritizes the well-being and adoption of all their animals, ensuring they receive the love and care they deserve.

What Happens to Cats That Don’t Sell at PetSmart?

When it comes to cats that don’t sell at PetSmart, the company has established protocols to ensure their well-being and find them suitable homes. In instances where a cat has a defect that prevents it from being placed on the sales floor, or if theres an unexpected error resulting in newborn kittens, PetSmart takes proactive measures to address their situation.

To begin with, PetSmart aims to find suitable adoptive families for these cats. Interested customers, as well as PetSmart associates, are given the opportunity to adopt these felines. By extending this opportunity to the general public as well as their own employees, PetSmart increases the chances of finding loving homes for these cats.

How Does PetSmart Determine if a Cat Has a Defect That Prevents It From Being Placed on the Sales Floor?

PetSmart has a thorough process to determine if a cat has any condition that would prevent it from being placed on the sales floor. They’ve trained staff who carefully evaluate the overall health, behavior, and appearance of the cats. This evaluation includes checking for any obvious physical defects or ailments that may affect their well-being or prevent them from being in an environment with potential customers. The goal is to ensure that only healthy and suitable cats are made available for adoption or purchase.


In conclusion, responsible breeders understand the commitment and responsibility that comes with breeding animals. Thus, they take great care in ensuring the well-being of every individual they bring into the world. While it may be challenging to find homes for every kitten, reputable breeders don’t simply discard or abandon unsold kittens. Instead, they continue to provide a loving and supportive environment, actively seeking suitable homes or, in some cases, choosing to keep them as cherished permanent members of their own families. This unwavering dedication showcases the values of compassion, integrity, and genuine concern for the welfare of these precious lives, highlighting the importance of responsible breeding practices in the pet industry.

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