When you first start out breeding you are advised to house a queen or two but to avoid keeping a stud cat. I, like many before me started this way but as my first queen began to grow older I started worrying about the inevitable trip to a stud keeper. As time passes by you develop a bond with your kitten and by the time she was 6 months I decided I did not want to take her to a stud house. This left me with the dilemma of either abandoning my breeding program altogether or raising my own stud from scratch. I took the latter option and have not regretted it since.
The first thing to consider before purchasing a stud is where he will be kept. I bought my stud as a kitten so he had free roam of my apartment but as they get older they are likely to spray which means somewhere you will need to convert a part of your house into ‘stud quarters.’ The obvious choice is to create a stud house in your garden. For me, this was not an option as I live in an apartment with no outdoor facilities.
My stud liked to spend most of his time in one of my bedrooms so I thought it would be logical to pick this room as the main stud quarters. If you do have outdoor facilities though. I would strongly recommend you choose these over indoor premises because of the problem of cat spraying. When you build stud quarters outside make sure it is fully secure. The last thing you want is your stud escaping as even if he returns you are risking him exposure to nasty feline viruses such as FIV. Once he acquires such a virus you can kiss your whole breeding program goodbye as he will quickly infect any queens you keep as well as the repercussions of infecting paying customers who wish to use his services on their own queens. So make sure he cannot escape and make sure it is secure to stop potential thieves stealing him. My Persian stud cost me $1800 which is not an unusual price to pay; point being cat thieves do exist and your first priority should be your pet’s safety and well-being.
Make sure your stud house contains lots of toys; warm blankets (I recommend wool) and shelter! If it starts pouring down with rain your stud needs somewhere to go to get out of the rain. I also recommend to let your stud indoors for supervised playtime. Keep an eye on him as you do not want him left to his own devices as he will more than likely start spraying around the house and anyone who has gone to a breeder’s home can tell you – the smell is absolutely atrocious, the male spraying is 100 times more potent than their female equivalents.
Keeping a stud really is not that difficult and it is a very rewarding experience. I personally liked the freedom of not being dependent on stud owners who I found to be quite arrogant and they spoke as if they were doing me a favor (which was the opposite considering they were charging on average $500 for their services). Keeping a stud means you can offer stud services yourself. But make sure all visiting queen’s have vaccinations up to date and are clear of viruses such as FIV. It only takes one queen to infect your stud and if this happens he will need to be neutered and retired early.