Our interaction with Annette was initially positive. She seemed to really love Burmese cats and has been breeding for years. Unfortunately we missed some red flags that should of let us know to avoid this cattery and the heartache that came with it.
We purchased a kitten from Annette, brought him home & took right away to the vet. The vet was concerned because the vaccine & medical records for the kitten were incomplete. The vet explained that the vaccine protocol was incorrect & sporadic. The kitten appeared okay aside from a cold (sneezing etc) and lethargy. However we assumed this could be due to re-homing adjustments. The clinic did a complete evaluation & ran the necessary tests including fecal. Three weeks later we were concerned that the cold remained & decided to see another vet for a second opinion. This vet also expressed concerned about the inadequate medical care of the kitten as documented by Ms. Maze. He asked many questions about the breeder--the cattery environment, number of cats, history of illness, why the kitten was weaned so early (4 weeks), why the breeder was absolutely insistent that we do not neuter until 9 or 10 months or even later so we don't cause the cat stress. These were all red flags that something wasn't quite right with this cattery. When I contacted Annette she brushed off concerns & went on & on about how much she loves cats.
About six weeks after bringing our little one home, he began to seem quite "off" --just not right. Thus began a series of trips to the veterinary clinic-- which is staffed by top notch doctors & assistants. Over the next two months multiple medical investigation and inventions took place and over a thousand dollars was spent but cat's health continued to deteriorate. The final two weeks of his life he deteriorated dramatically. Finally, with the results of multiple tests in hand along with the now glaringly obvious physical symptoms, our sweetie was diagnosed with non-effusive FIP. We were devasted but had been prepared by the vets for this possible outcome. Lovingly, we chose to end his pain. He died peacefully in our arms--able to relax in the last moments as he was freed from pain. Our clinic was amazing and so kind. They also made it very clear that this disease came from the cattery.
When I contacted Annette she said she was "heartbroken" and "devastated". Her response was very dramatic which is understandable since she presents herself as one who loves cats. In the next breath however, she questioned the cause of death and our vets. I expressed my concern that no other families go through this and encouraged her to seek direction from her local vet. A day later she emailed me that she had spoken with "another breeder friend" about this to get advice. Odd that she didn't turn to an actual medical professional. She agained questioned the diagnosis, claiming that none of her cats have ever had it or been sick. I wrote back that we had seen three different vets and all had confirmed the diagnosis which must take into account a variety of factors including physical manifestations, history, blood work etc. . . I also sent her links to websites which detail feline corona virus and FIP--one by a leading world specialist. It was then that her demeanor changed. Gone was the sympathy and it's place total denial. She claimed that she had "never heard of" FIP or the coronavirus. That's when my blinders fell off and I realized she had been putting one over on us from the beginning. All the red flags from before indicated that she knew full well she had a coronavirus positive (or worse) mother and knowingly placed kittens with a high liklihood of developing FIP.
My response was one of disbelief. I told her that I found it very difficult to believe she had never heard of this especially as she claims to have been breeding cats for 30 years. I offered to have our vets write a letter with documentation for her and her vet. I asked her to proactive in dealing with this. She never responded and refuses to do so. What makes this so sad is that I believe that Annette does love cats, but obviously not enough to safeguard their health. Unresponsibly bringing animals into the world only to suffer is not only negligent but a form of cruelty. I understand that many, many cats who carry the coronavirus will never actually develop FIP but it is unethical for a breeder with a known health problem in the cattery to place infected cats with the hope that they won't develop FIP. That is gambling in its worse form and the manipulation of good-hearted people seeking a pet family member. It is the kind of "rip off" that breaks hearts.
NOTE: Not once in my communications with Ms. Maze did I speak or write in anger or with disrespect. I never threatened retaliation or even requested a refund (and one was never offered). I chose to report here because Ms. Maze will not communicate with me and I to save other future cat owners from the heartache our family has experienced. This was not one time aberration in a litter that affected only one kitten. We purchased two cats from Annette at the same time--they were brothers. The surviving cat has tested positive for the coronavirus --mid level titers. We are watching him closely, almost holding our breaths, that he will not develop FIP. Fortunately he appears to have a stronger constitution than his brother.