WITH Christmas around the corner, a lot of us are popping a new furry friend at the top of our wishlist.
Luckily, one vet has tried to make the decision about which breed a little bit easier.
Ben, known online as @ben.the.vet, often shares his pet tips online with his 128,000 followers.
In his latest video, the animal fan shares the breeds he’d avoid – including Bengals, Sphynx cats, Scottish Folds, and Persian cats.
“I’m a vet and here are four cat breeds I would never choose to buy.
“I say buy because if it was a rescue situation and they needed to be adopted, then that’s different, and I would consider them.
“Remember as with the previous videos, this is just based on my personal experience as a vet.
“When we’re talking about health problems, there is science to back up what I’m saying, but ultimately this is my opinion.
“Number four for me is the Bengal. They are beautiful-looking cats, they have gorgeous coats, I can see why people like them.
“But what a lot of people aren’t aware of is that they’re a hybrid between a type of wild cat, called an Asian leopard cat, and domestic cat breeds, so they’re still quite wild in terms of their behaviour and temperament.
“And at the vets, they have a reputation for being quite aggressive.
“Usually, it’s out of fear, but they can actually be really quite dangerous to handle.
“They’re highly intelligent, they need a lot of stimulation, and unfortunately a lot of homes just aren’t right for them.
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“Number three for me is the Sphynx. Nothing against them, they’re nice cats, I just prefer to cuddle [with] a fluffy cat.
“Another breed I would never buy is a Scottish Fold cat, and the reason is that their curly ears, which is their most distinctive feature, is actually because of a cartilage disorder called Osteochondrodysplasia.
“The problem is that this defective cartilage is also found in all of their joints, and this means that they commonly develop painful arthritis at a young age.
“For me, that is just cruel and unfair, and I could never support their breeding.
“Number one for me, it is the Persian cat and that is because of how flat their faces are, and how many issues that cause them with regards to their health, and their day-to-day life.
“As with the brachycephalic dog breeds, like French Bulldogs and Pugs, there are some breeders that are trying to breed Persian cats with less extreme features, but in my experience, they’re in the minority, and on the whole people are just far too accepting of the health problems that these cats have.
“I have seen Persian cats whose noses look inverted into their face, in that their eyes bulge beyond their nose.
“People don’t realise they can struggle to breathe just as [bad] as some of the flat-faced dog breeds and that’s for the same reasons on the whole.
“Their nostrils are too small, all of the bones in their nasal passages are crowded together, and they often have a too long a soft palate at the back of their throat.
“Their tear ducts usually don’t work properly, so all of their eye bogies collect around their eyes.
“Because of the shape of their heads, and the fact they have these bulging eyes, they’re very prone to eye issues, such as corneal ulcers.
“They’re all predisposed to heart disease and a problem called polycystic kidney disease, which studies have shown affects 40 percent of them.
“Oh and they’re prone to dental disease as well. So they’re a bit of a health disaster overall, and for that reason, I could never buy one.”
Fans took to the comments to agree with the vet, with many sharing their own experiences with the breeds.
One wrote: “Bengals definitely need the right owners and breeders to make it work. Lots of socialisation and activities, otherwise they get bored and destructive.”
Others encouraged his followers to adopt, rather than buy from a breeder. One commented: “Adopt don’t shop!! There [are] so many kitties in adoption shelters that need a loving home.”
But not all agreed with the vet’s opinions, with one writing: “Not the sphynx slander. They’re so affectionate, I love them.”