Thanks for all replies and advice everyone
Well, we have a new resident! Totally not what I had in mind - but just what my other half has always wanted - sort of!!
My husband has always longed for a Maine Coon - not something likely to happen on our budget! However, we have found a retired queen free to good home, providing we get her neutered.
I'm not sure it was the right thing to do - at 7 she is much older than I had in mind, and she seemed incredible skittish and uptight and fearful when we saw her. Apparently she doesn't like the entire toms even being in the same room as her, let alone in the same pen. I could hold her, but she wouldn't let my other half stroke her, although there was no spitting or hissing, She has been kept in a shed with indoor pens, so is not used to a home environment. Think we may have bitten off a bit more than we thought. If I've taken on a pig in poke ( or should that be cat in poke??) please be honest and tell me! Also, which surprised me, there was no contract or written pledge to have her neutered, and we were firmly told that if she didn't get on with our existing chaps, it was definitely our problem "Once she goes, she goes!"
Anyone have any hints??
I was really surprised at how detatched the breeder seemed - she didn't know the age of the cat and couldn't even remember her name, or any of the other.s names. I've never been to a breeders before, is this normal - a way of dealing with the inevitability of saying goodbye to the cat at somepoint? Is it just me being sensitive - I know these cats are a business, but it seemed so impersonal, as if they were no more special than a bag of home grown veg you might sell at the garden gate. I know some of you are breeders - can you put me on the right foot about this, I'd really appreciate it. To be honest, it left a rather nasty taste at the back of my mouth!!