Floppycats.com had an Interview with Judy Mackey of GalaxyRags Cattery. Judy Mackey is the owner and operator of GalaxyRags Cattery in Cincinnati, OH. Her phone is 513-489-1935. Her website is www.galaxyrags.com.
How long have you been breeding Ragdolls?
I have been breeding for approximately 4 years
How did you pick Ragdolls to breed?
I saw the Ragdoll first on a TV show and knew I had to have one. I purchased a show quality first and started showing. I was then hooked on the breed. After getting 3 show alters, I decided I would be better off breeding my own cats.
Do you show? Why or why not?
I do show and it is for the comraderie plus, it allows me to see how my cats compare to other ragdolls that are out being shown. It enables me to keep breeding to the Ragdoll Standard.
What congenital defects are in Ragdolls?
I don’t know if you would consider it a congenital defect in Ragdolls, as it is in all breeds of cats including domestics, but HCM (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy) has been a concern to breeders of the Ragdoll.
How are you breeding to avoid those defects?
Through the hard work of the Ragdoll breeders, research has found one of the main mutations of HCM in Ragdolls. This has been an ongoing research project that breeders have contributed to. There is now a DNA test to find that mutation in the Ragdoll. I have had all of my breeding cats DNA tested for this mutation. I have chosen not to breed any cat that may have the known mutation and have been very fortunate in that none of my breeding cats have tested positive for the mutation.
How large is your breeding operation?
I usually have 4-8 litters a year, sometimes a little less.
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Where do your cats spend most of their time?
My cats are part of my household. I am fortunate in that I have enough area that I am able to keep my females, males, and litters separate and still keep them as part of the household.
Do you breed full time? In other words, do you have another job?
I work part-time in a veterinary hospital in addition to breeding my ragdolls.
What sort of health guarantees do you offer?
My kittens are guaranteed healthy at time of delivery and they have a guarantee against congenital defects. In addition, all of my kittens are vet checked at least twice before going to their new home, they are vaccinated, and they have been spayed or neutered.
What happens if the kitten gets sick?
I keep in constant touch with my new kitten families and am more than happy to share expertise and advise with them. I have been fortunate in that I have not had problems with my kittens going to new homes other than the usual stress related kitten problems. All resolve within a few days. If there would happen to be a major problem, it would be handled according to my contract.
Do you have any fun adoption stories to share?
Nothing I can think of at the moment.
What makes this kitten or cat “pet quality” or “show quality”?
First and foremost, is type. The kitten must meet the standard in all respects to be considered a show/breeder quality kitten. In addition, you would want an outgoing kitten if it is going to be placed in a home or cattery where it is going to be shown. Any Ragdoll is “pet quality” as they will all fit into a pet home. Some very nice quality Ragdolls are placed in pet homes simply because I am not able to use them in my breeding program or I do not have a breeder home that I feel is right for them. Many times, a small mismark of color or incorrect ear placement, or such, will determine that a kitten will go to a pet home rather than as a “show quality” kitten.
Do you keep some of your cats for your own?
I keep quite a few of my own cats. I have several of my own cats in my program that have become Supreme Grand Champions, Regional Winners, and International Winners. I love to show cats that I have bred and I love seeing what they produce in my program.
How old is your oldest cat?
My oldest cat is 10 years old.
What is your favorite Ragdoll look?
If you mean by look, my favorite Ragdoll pattern, I am partial to the seal mitted Ragdoll. Those are always the ones that I want to keep.
Do you raise your cats underfoot?
All of my cats are underfoot. My children and grandchildren always are around the babies and we spend a lot of time with them. We keep them in rooms where we normally spend a lot of time so they are well socialized. Obviously, the studs have their own runs though.
Do you send photos of the parents before you adopt a kitten? Or do you post the parents on the website?
Parents are on website. I can send pictures if requested.
Do you send the kitten’s pedigree when you adopt a kitten?
If for a pet, a copy of the pedigree goes in their kitten packet.
Will it be a problem if one requests, and wants to pay for, the CatGenes DNA testing before one accepts a kitten?
No, but I prefer the tests done by Washington State University.
Can people interested in purchasing one of your cats visit your cattery?
I do not allow any visitors if I have unvaccinated kittens in the house. It is unsafe for the babies. I do send pictures of the kittens to prospective owners. With my cattery being in my home, I limit visitors to those that have a deposit placed.
If a possible adoptee cannot visit your cattery, are you willing to talk to your adoptee on the phone?
I always talk to adoptees on the telephone throughout the time they are waiting for a kitten and send updated pictures whenever I can.
How do you honor your health guarantee? There is no legal binding issue there, so that’s why I’m asking.
If there is a health issue that is proven by veterinary or necropsy reports, I would replace the kitten. Fortunately, that has not been an issue with me.
What if a kitten gets adopted and the customer is unhappy with a kitten, what do you do?
I would offer to find another home for the kitten and any monies taken for the kitten would be given to the owner. Of course, the age of the kitten has a lot to do with how quickly they can be placed.
How are your kittens registered?
All of my litters are registered with CFA and TICA. Purchasers are given their registration slips.
Are you capable of including the kittens maturing pattern since birth?
I am not sure how you mean this. Can I provide birth weights, growth patterns, etc? I do keep records on all my kittens.
What vaccination brand do you use? And what vaccinations are given, when?
I give intranasal 2 way vaccines at 4-6 weeks if I have been showing alot where my cats may have been exposed. Otherwise, I give Merial MLV 3 way at 8-9 weeks and again at 12 weeks if they have not gone to their new homes yet. All of my injectable vaccines are given by my vet.
What are the kittens fed?
My kittens free feed on dry kitten, Royal Canin & Iams, and they also receive canned chicken & lamb kitten food 3 X a day until they leave for their new homes.
Floppycats.com has interviewed the following Ragdoll breeders. If you would like to read their interview, please click on any of them below.
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