What costs are involved in adoption?
The cost of adopting a cat or kitten from a rescue are generally much lower than the cost you would be faced with when you get a "free" kitten. How can this be?
When you get a "free" kitten from someone, chances are he or she will not yet be desexed (speyed or neutered), vaccinated or microchipped. This means you will need to organise this with your own vet. A kitten can normally be de-sexed as soon as it reaches 1 kg of body weight, and this should well before six months of age to prevent unwanted litters and issues such as spraying.
Vet fees for desexing generally range between $90 - 190 depending on location, sex of cat and whether medications such as pain relief is included in the cost. In Wellington we have found the average neuter price to be about $115 and the average spey price about $160.
Kittens should have at least two sets of core vaccinations to protect them from life-threatening illnesses such as cat flu and panleukopenia virus. The cost of each consult and vaccination is around $65 - 75, which means you are paying around $140 for vaccinations alone.
Microchipping costs can vary, but range from about $30 right up to $80. In some areas, such as Wellington and Palmerston North, microchipping is mandatory. Even if this does not apply to your region, microchipping is highly recommended as it helps pets to be reunited with their owners if they get lost or stolen.
Adding up all these costs, you are looking at a total of $250 - $420, not including the cost of flea and worm treatments.
So what does it cost to adopt? Outpawed cats and kittens go to their new homes with all of the above already done for you. They are desexed, microchipped, registered on the NZCAR and have had at least two (sometimes three) sets of vaccinations. All you have to pay is an adoption fee of between $80 - 130, which helps the charity offset some of the costs incurred in preparing your kitty for adoption.
Please feel free to get in touch if you would like to know more about the costs involved in cat ownership.