Siamese and Balinese cats and kittensunhealthy animals

S
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Diane Varni hoards unhealthy cats in an environment that can only be described as utter squalor. The overwhelming stench of cat urine can be smelled from the dirt driveway outside the house. Although some cats appear to be healthy(ier) the inside of the house is overrun with cats and kittens exhibiting nasal discharge as well as discharge from the eyes. Kitten diarrhea is visible all over the house. Diane Varni doesn't take her animals to a veterinarian for treatment. She "trades' for medications to treat her animals. She admits she "tests" the drugs on the stray and unwanted cats that have been dropped at her home. If the drugs don't kill the strays, she gives them to the indoor cats. She's not a veterinarian so she has no idea what kind of dosage is necessary OR safe. However, she states she believes she knows more about the health and treatment of cats than any veterinarian we consulted. The two kittens we purchased/rescued from her both tested positive for the Corona virus, the precursor to its mutated form: FIP (feline infectious peritonitis). At the time we acquired the kittens, three separate, unaffiliated veterinarians were concerned they would not survive to adulthood. Over the course of several months, we spent thousands of dollars trying to treat the cats and nurse them back to health. While they currently appear to be relatively healthy (one cat still has a chronic cough and both cats suffer from periodic bouts of conjunctivitis originally contracted in Diane’s home) we've been instructed by our veterinarian to have any visitors to our home (who possess cats of their own) change their shoes before they return to their own homes, in order to avoid passing the virus to their own pets. We have also been warned not to bring any other cats into our home. THESE RESTRICTIONS WILL APPLY FOR THE REST OF THESE CATS LIVES. When she was notified of their illness (within hours of accepting custody of the kittens) Diane exhibited no interest in the health of the kittens. Her only interest was in the money she believed was still due her. We also discovered that any protracted communication with Diane was impossible. Her views and responses vary from conversation to conversation so it is impossible to make any progress trying to resolve our concerns and reach a mutually agreeable conclusion. Finally, although not a significant concern to us, Diane Varni's website *used* to specify her animals were CFA and ACA registered. As the result of my inquiry, CFA told me Diane had never registered any cats with them. They also stated they were going to ask her to pull their name from her website. After a long Internet search, I was finally able to locate a disconnected number for ACA which led me to an active telephone number. The organization appears to be run by a lone, elderly woman who wanted to know how I got her telephone number. After explaining the story and my concerns about our kittens, this woman told me Diane had not recently registered any animals with her.

Responses

  • Tw
    TwitterCat Apr 06, 2013
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    Oops I meant to vote that I agree with this complaint.

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  • Sr
    S R Simon Apr 03, 2013
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    User85, Thank you so much for caring about the accuracy of the information we had. You're very kind. I wish someone would do something about this breeder because it looks like she's been producing sick cats for years. I know I don't really understand FIP or the Corona virus/es but what little I do understand makes me sad when I think about how many cats in her care may be adversely affected. My veterinarian just told me yesterday she's so glad we have the two cats we rescued because she thinks many people wouldn't be able to afford to care for them as well as we do: the female currently has a respiratory virus (which my veterinarian believes is a recurrence of one she originally acquired in Diane's cattery--herpes?) as well as an unusual cyst/polyp in her ear that's created a really messy infection. Poor little cat is really tired of being medicated. Thank you again.

    1 Votes
  • Tw
    TwitterCat Apr 03, 2013
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    Other breeders who know her have commented on the unhealthy and unclean conditions she keeps her cats in. FIP is airborne, and it's transmission is encouraged by squalid conditions and unclean litterboxes, which according to other complaints/people who have been to her residency, seems to fit the bill. In addition, FIP can be genetically transferred. It is unclear whether Diana's kittens are being infected through the disgusting conditions, over-crowding, and just being around each other (FIP is an extremely transferable and infectious disease), or whether the kittens are infected genetically from conception. Either way, it is extremely clear she has an FIP problem. If you mention her name to any Siamese or Balinese breeder, they immediately recognize it for unhealthy kittens, FIP, etc. It seems, actually, she is the face of FIP amongst the Siamese community. It's unfortunate, however, that consumers and the law enforcement doesn't know enough about this, which is why I began to post on more official boards with high circulation rates, to help other potential buyers or those already affected, and to encourage them to file against her.

    I have told her and will take her to court, but I must file in Oregon inconveniently, and that is the only reason I have not proceeded as of yet. However, I will get to Oregon within the next year, and I will file. It would be great if others all took a stand against this, too. I do it for the lovely kitten that died because of someone who brought her into this world, and did nothing for her. She died 3 months after purchase. Her deterioration in the end was so quick, she could barely walk, her stomach had filled up with so much liquid. It had been drained twice, and we tried everything to save her but we couldn't. It's heartbreaking, and yet Diane seems to have no compassion. When my vet called her and yelled at her (she also did research and discovered Diane has an FIP problem and is an irresponsible breeder), she purportedly cried and promised to never breed, but what I do know is that it has been a few years, and she hasn't stopped.

    Take action! Contact me if you'd like to speak, I'd love to connect.

    1 Votes
  • Us
    User8515830 Mar 31, 2013

    Thank you very much for the update. From your initial post, I feared your vet had done a snap test for CV, and when your cats came back positive told you the cats had FIP and were going to die. Regrettably, there are vets who terrify their clients that way. I am pleased to hear your vet is not one of them.
    FIP remains a mystery. It seems as though the more we learn about it, the less we actually know. I hope the health of your cats improves, and they bring joy to your life for many years to come.

    0 Votes
  • Sr
    S R Simon Mar 30, 2013
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    Thank you so much for commenting. I do understand there are different strains of Corona virus. It is such a hard-to-diagnose, iimpossible-to-predict illness, I didn't think I sh/could go into detail about it here--particularly as I have no training. My veterinarian did tell me the tests we performed wouldn't provide a definitive diagnosis but could give us a better idea if the later development of FIP was something we should leave on the table. The best case scenario would have been that the kittens tested negative for the virus which is the result we were hoping for. One of the kittens tested positive for Corona virus at a level that was, as you and our veterinarian pointed out, simply inconclusive. The second kitten tested positive for Corona virus at a much greater level which is something I was given to understand "experts" think is more significant (although still inconclusive). The point I was trying to make is that since FIP has been diagnosed in her cattery (there are several other complaints on this forum), and since these cats are not Corona virus-free, we will remain on alert throughout their lives--however long that might be. (Because of our cats, our veterinarian recently took a course specifically focused on FIP. Apparently, the experts now believe that instead of being a contagious illness, it appears more likely it's a genetically transmitted one. With this added piece of information, I surmise that since this breeder doesn't appear to have any control over which cats breed, and since she also freely admits she doesn't employ the use of a veterinarian, it's likely she's continuing to churn out kittens at risk for developing FIP. It's very sad.)

    0 Votes
  • Us
    User8515830 Mar 29, 2013

    While I'm sorry you had to deal with a bad breeder, you really should do some more research on coronaviruses. Corona virus is inherent in the cat, and there are many varieties of corona. No one, not even the experts, know what causes one of the corona viruses to mutate into FIP. It is thought that stress and overcrowding contribute to viral mutation, but again, no one really knows.

    0 Votes

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