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Karma Farms / Awful experience

1 United States Review updated:
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Vickie Ives Speir and her family of Karma Farms in Marshall, Texas (Woodlawn, Texas, actually, just north of Marshall) intentionally breeds cats with deformed front leg bones which render them incapable of getting around except through hopping in a motion reminiscent of someone using a pogo stick. She calls them the Twisty Cats.

Unfortunately, this is not illegal in Texas. Speir started publicizing the cats in 1998 and received a big backlash in return. She now pities herself publicly, considers herself persecuted, and vilifies, threatens and harasses the people who protest her actions and/or try to put a halt to it. Her husband has left her. The older of her two daughters, Victoria (Tori), has publicly supported her in this and her younger daughter, who is 16, has not said anything publicly against it.

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  • Be
      23rd of Mar, 2010
    -33 Votes

    I’m not completely familiar with the Speir case, however, I do know that radial hypoplasia is a genetic mutation that is often seen with polydactyl cats. It is something that shows up whether it is being specifically bred for or not. It is seen often in barn cats (although many of them do not live long because they do not have the care given to them that the Speir cats were given). Unfortunately, nearly all breeds of domestic animals have their own downfall within their genetic lines. Australian Shepherds have their fatal whites, Dachshunds have herniating discs, and Persians have respiratory issues from minute nasal openings and a soft palate overlap. Often times we (the public) never see the mutations because the animals are euthanized before her has anything to do with her breeding, whether you do or do not agree with her tactics or results the public is aware. Some mutations are more easily avoided and bred around than others (like fatal whites), while others can be very random and unforeseen (radial hypoplasia). Also, I fail to see how her husband leaving.

  • Fl
      30th of Mar, 2010
    -31 Votes

    My family and I traveled from Florida to Texas back in 2003 to adopt a polydactyl kitten. While we were at the ranch we saw the "twisty" cats and like the Speir family has commented they appeared to be well-loved and well-taken care of. We did purchase a polydactyl kitten while there and she was the most intelligent cat that we ever raised and had a personality un-match by any cat we have ever owned before or since. Unfortunately our cat was taken by a coyote in August of 2008. We were all heart-broken and, to this day, can't even talk about her without becoming upset. We have since adopted two rescued polydactyl tux kittens - one from Fairhope, AL and the other from Mobile, AL. Polydactyls have a special way about them - kind of a dog disguised in a cat suit! I will be back in the Dallas area in April of this year (2010) and I would not hesitate to adopt another kitten from the ranch if one was available.

    I also see no need in anyone making any comment about the break-up of Ms. Speir's marriage. That is a very personal thing and only those two individuals involved know the reasons for it and it would not be anyone else's business! It is also not relevant to her running of the horse farm.

    V. Schang

  • Br
      3rd of Apr, 2010
    -38 Votes

    I personally agree that it is no one's business about divorce and matter's such as that.I myself plan on doing business with them hopefully in the very near future.I think people should refrain from making comment's about such matter's on personal thing's as that.

  • Ot
      6th of Oct, 2010
    +40 Votes

    Florida Cat Lover, if you really loved cats, you would be sick over this. That Ms. Ives is totally wrong about this is not anything that's debatable; it's self-evident. I'm not going to waste my time arguing with you or Ms. Ives' other friend Brother Blue about that.

  • Pl
      17th of Feb, 2012
    -38 Votes

    I have been to the Karma Farms property twice in the past month. I have seen these cats. Had I not noticed the cat's feet, I would not have known they were any different from a "regular" cat. They can do everything any other cat can do and they all look very well cared for. They are very sweet cats and if I wasn't allergic, I wouldn't mind adopting one or two.

  • Te
      5th of Aug, 2012
    -38 Votes

    I agree that Vik and Tom's breakup has no bearing on this conversation as I was there when it happened and it was not over cats! My concern is that someone who is fragrant with the odor of canabis every time I see her has the legal right to decide on the breeding of any animal. Bloodshot eyes and the munchies don't make for a good clear mind.

  • Ji
      28th of Aug, 2012
    -41 Votes

    she is breeding polydactyls which imho are the best natured cats on earth, yeah its sucks some are coming out deformed, but I seriously doubt she is intentionally doing this. If someone there is smoking pot its their own business. Not Yours. Bottom line mind your own business. Pathetic

  • Ot
      16th of Sep, 2012
    Best Best Advice +43 Votes

    Any message board discussing Vickie Ives' misconduct attracts her friends posting propaganda on her behalf, like cockroaches attracted by garbage. It doesn't matter if you can't see the moral failure of what she's doing, it just indicates that you're messed up yourselves. It's pathetic. I had the misfortune of knowing her once and the constant pot-smoking doesn't surprise me at all. Nor does the fact that her husband up and dumped her.

  • Ma
      6th of Apr, 2016
    -42 Votes

    My wife and I just went to Karma Farms today for a trail ride and Vik gave us an incredible experience. I met all the animals poly cats included who were all very well taken care of. This woman is running a 65 head horse farm. She doesn't have time to sit around intentionally inbreeding poly cats to create twisty rabbit cats. Last time I checked they were into selling colonial spanish horses not mutated poly cats. You make it sound as if there are 50 hopping around out there when we didn't even see the one or two who are actually there. Plus your personal attack on her about her marriage and possible Marijuana use is A. Slander and B. As unchristian as you could possibly come across. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. It is the best place in the east texas area to horseback ride that I have found and affordable at that. It seems that all horse trainers/breeders have to endure slander at some point including Monty Roberts, but you come on here with some cat crusade which was just a weak see through facade you put up in order to launch a personal attack on Vik. I don't even know Vik personally but can see through this complaint for what it really is. Hate.

  • Ot
      14th of Jun, 2016
    +42 Votes

    How'd *you* get paid for kissing Vickie Ives' rear end, Matthew?

  • Ka
      5th of Oct, 2016
    -35 Votes

    This is Vickie Ives. Just found this board and am seriously surprised that this business is still being discussed at all. I loved my darling Twisties. They have all been dead for some years except Scooter, and Reno, the last ones born. As one of your commenters above who was educated about the condition mentioned, they are from polydactyl cats and are rare as hen's teeth. We do not breed for them but we loved and cared for the few that were born. Both Flipper and Eleamor lived to be sixteen and never had any health issues relating to their legs at all. Both that still live here are middle aged, healthy and quite happy. They are also neutered. This is and always was just an online witch hunt. We don't even breed polys any longer as we have cut back on all our small animals bred to the farm due to my age and health. My ex wanted to move to some island and sell the farm which I would not do. Our separation had nothing to do with the animals at all except that he was looking for a simpler life with less work due to a heart condition. Flipper and my daughter were on the old Leeza Show years ago, and the vet she had on to examine Flip said she appeared happy, healthy and he saw no issues with he living a happy life. He was right. All animals are gifts and should be cherished as the angels they are. Check out our very old page

  • Ot
      10th of Dec, 2016
    +30 Votes

    @Karma Farms So you didn't even care about your own husband's well-being, just your own selfish interests, huh, Vickie Frankenstein?

  • Ot
      21st of Oct, 2016
    +34 Votes

    One thing you need to know about Vickie Ives is, what she says may be the truth, lies or a mixture of the two, but it will always be self-serving. Always. Therefore, if it's something that makes her look bad, and she denies it, take that, whatever it is, with a sack or two of salt. She also gets her friends to post propaganda on her behalf, and by definition they've drunk her Kool-Aid, or at least have been led to believe what she wants them to believe, so be skeptical about that, too.
    Here is a more objective look at the Twisty Cats. Spoiler: It doesn't make Vickie Ives look good.

  • Ca
      22nd of Apr, 2018
    +18 Votes

    Yes, i was an original poster against Vicki who purposely bred them on purpose and tried to sell and register them as a breed to make money. You are sick disgusting liar Vicki...I remember it all too well.

  • Ot
      26th of Apr, 2018
    +17 Votes

    And on her Facebook page, everyone who gave her horse farm bad reviews was never there, somehow. We only have her word for that. Of course, one of them is from Pakistan, but Pakistanis can and do travel to the US and have found their way to east Texas and are capable of horseback riding just like other human beings. Some US citizens also are originally from Pakistan and travel to the country of their birth.

    Karma Farms also has 89 5-star reviews and just a handful of 4-star reviews, no 3-stars, and 1 each of 2-star and 1-star, an implausible ratio considering how real people review businesses in real life (lots of decent places get bad Yelp and Google reviews). This makes me wonder how many of Karma Farms' reviewers are real people or have actually been to the place if they are real people, considering Vickie Ives' tendency toward mendacity and egotism.

  • Se
      20th of Jun, 2018
    -14 Votes

    I bought a poly from Karma (Vicky) a long time ago. We loved our Etcetera till the sad day she passed away. I thought Vicky was incredibly helpful with the whole process and we are greatful we found our poly at Karma. As for her pot smoking...Seriously? That and her relationships are 100% her personal business. I suppose any of you posters are experts huh?
    I totally believe what Vicky has stated and please stop the hateful comments - what good does it do anyone?

  • Ot
      28th of Jun, 2018
    +13 Votes

    @Sense2k It's called paying the piper. If she puts her personal business, including her lack of morality in its various manifestations, out there, she should expect criticism or worse from others. And she was nice to you simply because it served her interests to do. Nothing matters to Vickie Ives more than Vickie Ives, followed by what *she* does and *her* family. Not only did she drive her husband away because he cared about his own well-being, she once made a comment to the effect that Tomlyn was her favorite child because her other one, Tori, wanted to do something else with her life. If you've drunk Vickie Ives' Kool-Aid, that's your problem, but she will continue to be called out on her misconduct.

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