About the owner:
I am a mother of three amazing sons, and a child and family therapist (specializing in trauma and conflict resolution). I am an E-RYT yoga instructor registered through the yoga alliance, and a trained birth doula. I hold an Associate of Liberal Arts degree from Arapahoe Community College; a Bachelor's degree in Psychology with a minor in Human Services from Metropolitan State University of Denver; and a Master of Clinical Social Work Degree from the University of Denver, with a certificate in Interpersonal Trauma Studies. I am an activist in the areas of bee/pollinator protection, environment/wildlife protection and conservation, civil rights, animal rights, and breed specific legislation (removing it that is). In short, my work is to promote the mental and spiritual health and well-Being of the animals, individuals, and families I am so blessed to serve.
I have been in the ragdoll fancy for 18 years. And I have been raising litters off and on for at least 22 years. It started in adolescence raising feral litters and placing rescues. I have also spent many hours volunteering for the ASPCA and was first published at the age of 14 (a cover story describing the life of shelter animals) through the Animal Protection Institute. I take the husbandry practice very seriously. TempleDolls has been a dream of mine since the age of 16. I have built this from the ground up. Starting in my 2 bedroom apartment. I scrimped and saved until TempleDolls was born.
I have three very specific reasons for breeding Ragdoll cats:
The most important reason is to build character in my children by teaching them about the natural world. My three young sons are involved in every step of this process. Not only do they learn how to handle, love, and care for living beings who depend on them for this care; but they learn about healthy attachment, change, and "letting go" when it is time for the kittens to be placed with their forever families.
The second reason is to bring joy to the lives of others. I advocate for the therapeutic role that animals play in the lives of their humans -- through all stages of development. This means that I support the scientific research on the therapeutic effect that domestic pets have on people through all stages of life... for people young and old... and everything in between. I firmly believe that the unique characteristic qualities of the Ragdoll provide an increased level of therapeutic value in the household: they are a beauty for the eye to behold; their "flop" factor makes them accessible to children and adults alike; they are vocal and enjoy communicating with their humans; they live happily in apartments and houses alike; and, the well-socialized Ragdoll cat will seek (demand?) the company and affection of its humans. All of these qualities are a fantastic recipe to support the therapeutic human-animal connection.
Third, I breed Ragdolls to support my personal philosophy that a key component to a life well-lived means making what you love work for you. This is an important life-lesson that I need to teach my children through example. My deep love of animals inspired a lifelong desire to work with them. So engaging in this labor of love allows me to experience joy in my work while providing for my family.
How my boys are involved in raising the kittens:
My two older boys have daily chores involved in providing care for our Ragdolls. This includes cleaning out the litter boxes twice daily, and replacing the boxes with fresh litter as needed; giving fresh water in the morning and evening; and feeding them daily.
Both of the older boys groom our Rags at different times.
My 5 year old is learning impulse control in the proper handling of our ragdolls. He LOVES holding them...
All three of the boys spend a lot of personal time playing with and handling our pets.
My cattery is quite small, as I maintain a focus on quality -- rather than quantity. I understand that purchasing a purebred Ragdoll kitten is a tremendous financial investment, and it is important to me that my clients feel that their hard earned money is well spent by purchasing through me. We do plan for future growth, but I never want to produce more kittens than I can adequately raise and socialize underfoot.
2016 marks the first year of raising new TempleDolls queens and retiring my foundation queens. Because of this, numbers will be slightly higher during this transition.
It is crucial that all living beings under my roof have their developmental needs met.
Another benefit to the small size of my cattery is that I am able to get to know each kitten's unique personality and temperament. This is ideal in matching our kittens to the unique family and living situation of each client.
Our custom cattery space takes up our entire basement. There is a wall that divides the "main cattery space" and the "studio apartment." Both areas have a large window which lets in fresh air and natural light. We have installed commercial grade flooring for ease of sanitation. There is also a commercial grade exhaust fan as well as special lighting installed for vitamin D absorption . Both areas are equipped with cat trees, toys, scratch posts, and other furniture. We also have counter space, supply cabinets, and a sink with a garbage disposal. Both areas also have central heating and air conditioning. Both areas provide a warm/safe space for our dolls; while at the same time it is connected to all the household commotion. While our pride loves to stay together, we always have two ragdolls in the house with the family -- they take turns!
The new cattery space is also decorated with art. We are almost finished with it, so stay tuned for photos of the finished product!! We hope to unveil it soon!! We are still working on the finishing touches of paint and decor.
Our new favorite adult formula is Nature's Balance Limited Ingredient kibble and canned food for any Ragdoll with a sensitive gut. Organic skinless chicken breast is served here daily (boiled).
Probiotic is provided to all of our adults.
Our favorite kibble is iVet professional formula kitten food, which is only available through the veterinarian. We also feed Authority kitten wet food. I also LOVE Hills a/d Canine/Feline Critical Care canned food to my queens after they have given birth. This is a high calorie clinical wet food -- also available through the veterinarian -- that supports tissue growth and repair.
KMR kitten milk is provided as needed.
Other recommended foods would be Wellness Core and Halo.
A raw diet is recommended when properly researched and families have the financial means.
We run the cattery with clinic level standards. We use a variety of clinic grade cleaners daily on all surfaces of the cattery (including floors, all litter boxes, and crates). It has taken us several years of trial/error/experience to run the cattery to these standards.
All litter boxes are cleaned twice daily, without fail. When we have kittens in the house, the litter box will also be cleaned periodically throughout the day. The cat litter is replaced when we assess that it's time for a fresh box. The litter boxes, themselves, are replaced every three months (or sooner if need be). Each litter also gets a brand new litter box.
Litter box scoops and their holding containers are routinely cleaned and sanitized with germicidal cleanser.
Urine and feces are collected in one time use plastic bags and then stored in air tight plastic buckets. The contents of these buckets, as well as the cattery trash cans, are disposed of every Monday morning for trash pick-up. The holding buckets are cleaned and sanitized with germicidal cleanser once. The second time, the buckets are disposed of and replaced.
The cattery floor is vacuumed or swept every single day. We use a clinic grade floor cleaner as well as a sanitizing steam mop.
All linens are only used once and then disgarded. Fresh/clean newspaper is also used to line sanitary crates/nesting boxes.
The house is also vacuumed every other day, or daily when needed. All air vents in the house are equipped with filters.
The cat trees are routinely vacuumed and treated with an oxy cleaner until they must be replaced.
Plastic toys are routinely cleaned and sanitized with germicidal cleaner. Absorbent toys are thrown away once soiled.
We use only ceramic or porcelain dishes for food and water. Food and water bowls are rinsed every morning. The water is dumped and replenished at least twice daily. Food and water dishes are sanitized and run through the dishwasher twice weekly. They are sanitized with germicidal cleanser in between.
We have pumps of antimicrobial soap at the cattery sink, the kitchen sink, and the guest bathroom sink. There are one-time use paper towel dispensers both in the main cattery space as well as above the cattery sink in the studio apartment. We also have a latex/vinyl glove dispenser in the cattery.
There are bags of volcanic rocks that hang above the litter box areas for odor removal.
Shoes are not allowed in the cattery space. We each have our own pair of shoes that we can wear while in this space, and these shoes are routinely washed and cleaned with germicidal cleanser. Disposable shoe covers are also used daily.
Anybody handling kittens in the house will be required to wash their hands with antimicrobial soap before and after handling. We also always have sanitizing hand lotion on hand. This is to protect everybody's health.
We work closely with our veterinarian.
Our adult cats are provided with all veterinary support as indicated, including tests, imaging, and any needed emergency care, surgery, or hospitalization.
All of our cats are very healthy and none require routine medical care.
Our breeders are routinely de-wormed (including gut, heart, and lungs).
Fecal tests are run if symptoms of gut issues present.
Kittens also make their first clinic appearance around 8-10 weeks old (unless otherwise indicated). They are given a well-check, de-worming, and their first round of distemper vaccine before they come home. These records go home with your kitten.
ALL BREEDING TEMPLEDOLLS RAGDOLL CATS (and their parents) ARE NC STATE GENETIC TESTED HCM -/-.
ALL BREEDING TEMPLEDOLLS RAGDOLL CATS ARE TESTED FELV/FIV NEGATIVE.
This is something that I take very seriously, and is the "defining factor" of my work in raising our kittens. I put an enormous amount of time and energy into socializing our Ragdoll kittens. The purpose of this is to support early learning (conditioning) and human attachment.
The boys are usually not allowed to handle the newbies until after they are 4 weeks old. However, the nesting crate is kept in our kitchen, and the kittens are exposed to all of the household noises from the moment that they are born.
I use a minimalist approach in my handling of newborn kittens as well; but I talk to them daily, and move them from nesting crate to the smaller "safety box" when I am giving the mother her daily breaks, or cleaning out the crate.
At 4 weeks of age the kittens are moved from the nesting crate to their playpen which is kept in our living room. The playpen is equipped with a custom vinyl flooring cut out so that I can sanitize it. The playpen is also equipped with a litter box, scratch post, food/water dishes, and toys. This is where I litter box train them and introduce them to solid foods. Around 6 weeks old the kittens are introduced to the cattery space. They are placed in an extra large dog crate with a litter box, food/water, toys, etc. They stay here for the first several days so that they can build stronger immunity.
They are provided with scratch posts from 4 weeks of age, and are consistently trained to scratch only their posts and furniture.
Our kittens are raised in the house as a part of our family. They are handled and played with throughout the day by me and the boys, and when they get big enough, they enjoy playing with our dog as well. They are exposed to every possible loud noise... this house has three brothers! They get plenty of time to run, climb, and play. They hang around and help me with the laundry, help me do the dishes, and are always trying to snoop in the refrigerator. I expose them to the noise of the vacuum every time it runs too (their first responses to the vacuum are always a riot).
I also socialize the kittens by teaching them how to ride in the car in the crate. Their first car ride is usually to the adoption event. After that, they often go on a car ride while picking up the boys from school, or going to a friend or family members house to show them off. All of this works as easy stress inoculation to support your kittens growth in confidence and security.
The purpose of this socialization is to weed out any early formation of psychoneurosis in your cat thorough stress inoculation.
The result is a very well socialized baby who is ready to be an active and present family member in its new furever home.
What's With the Price Tag?
Please read our "Thank You" page to learn more about what your patronage actually supports.
One thing is for certain: a red flag should be raised if you find a "purebred Ragdoll" for a price that seems drastically lower than reputable breeder prices. This is indicative of over-breeding, kitten mills, and breeding cats that are not registered -- which means that the cats might not be purebred Ragdolls in the first place. IF you do get a purebred Ragdoll this way, you are at a very high risk for a cat who will die from HCM, and there is a high probability that you are supporting a kitten mill.
At first glance, it may seem that breeding Ragdolls would be an easy job coupled with easy money. The first thought might be, "A thousand dollars for a cat?! I'm going to have some kittens and sell them myself!" However, this labor of love takes a tremendous amount of hard work and dedication -- if it's being done right. The actual amount of profit brought in from the business is very little in comparison with the financial cost and the actual amount of time needed for the successful and ethical breeding of Ragdolls. I honestly don't think it would measure out to minimum wage. Most reputable breeders do it for the love of the breed and the joy it brings to the lives of other people.
This is a 27/7/365 undertaking. We do not have the luxury to even pick up and leave for a weekend get away. It is all day, every day of the year. There is no day off. This includes countless sleepless nights. And providing 24 hour nursing care to kittens, whenever indicated (you are sorely mistaken if you believe it always runs smoothly).
I always call this a labor of love, but I can not stress the amount of work we put into TempleDolls. This work is tedious. Many nights I have to laugh at myself as the literal incarnation of the "crazy cat lady," working with my ragdolls in my robe and slippers and my crazy bed head. All that is missing are sponge curlers!
My pet prices are set at $1250.00. These prices are comparable to most reputable breeders who produce high quality ragdoll babies. My prices are slightly higher than most reputable breeders; but you would be hard pressed to find a cattery that is run the way I run TempleDolls.
Breeding quality cats/kittens with breeding rights are sold at the base price of $2500, and are subject to increase based on TICA breed/show quality standards as well. I would only sell breeding rights to reputable/registered breeders or TempleDolls partners, so very few Temple Dolls cats will be placed this way.
My prices are set where they are so that I can afford to put in the type of work that I feel is appropriate for the "product" I offer to my clients. I understand that a Ragdoll is a substantial financial investment, and it is important to me that I do everything I can to ensure that my clients get what they pay for. This means purebred, traditional Ragdoll cats out of healthy, hearty breeding stock; providing the best possible nutrition to my cats and kittens (I do not scrimp on cost in this area, and this is my highest cost in running the cattery); utilities; genetic testing; hundreds of hours building and maintaining this website; providing adequate veterinary care; paying for all the supplies involved in running the cattery; spending countless hours of my time mindfully socializing the kittens by raising them underfoot; spending time developing a personal relationship with every single client; and paying all of the other numerous overhead expenses in running the business. Did I mention that I have an entire floor of my home dedicated to the cattery? Since my cattery is so small, I would not be able to afford to run the business at all if I didn't charge my fair prices.
It is important to consider that you get what you pay for. Reputable breeders can all attest that they have heard many horror stories about bad experiences with breeders. Whether you choose to work with Temple Dolls or another Ragdoll breeder, do yourself the favor of completing your due diligence in shopping your breeder so that you feel comfortable in your choice of breeder; and, in doing so, decreasing your risk for feeling taken advantage of, or unhappy with the process/outcome. And, most importantly, so that your patronage does not support abusive kitten mills and backyard breeding.