I had a discussion today with a fellow breeder about the quality of siberians, and how much effort goes in to producing kittens and cats that have the type, health and temperament you want. I am not a long time breeder, I have only been doing this a few years.
When I started out, I did a lot of research and looked at hundreds if not thousands of siberian pictures. I talked to other breeders, to judges at the shows and slowly a picture started forming in my head of the type of Siberian I want. We all have a picture in our head of what we think a siberian should look like. When you breed, it's a matter of trial and error, and I can tell you genetics are a funny thing, because you often get things you don't expect.
I have had outstanding parents that produced mediocre kittens and vice versa, so it is a matter of trying and see what lines work well together, getting over a lot of disappointment, and getting super excited when you finally see a kitten that has everything you're looking for.
I have spent thousands upon thousands importing cats that have great lines and that I had such high expectations for and they turned out to be a major disappointment. At the same token I have invested in cats that I thought were so so (it was an investment in the lines/pedigree) and they have produced some of the most gorgeous kittens.
Every once in a while, you get one of those kittens that you simply know is going to be great. I take a lot of pictures and when I see them through the lens of my camera, sometimes my heart starts beating faster, because I am looking for the flaws and I can't find them. That's when you know that all your years of hard work are starting to pay off, you breed a kitten that meets all of your expectations.
BeeDo is one of them. She was stunning when she was 4 weeks old, and then she entered her first dangly stage and her muzzle got pointy and she got long, dangly legs and I thought that was the end of it. Today, I took some pictures of her while she was sitting on the table and low and behold, she looks great. I know she is still in her dangly stage but I can see on the pictures what this is going to be when she grows up.
She will be going to her first show next weekend, and she is competing against JoJo. At this point I would say most think JoJo is the better kitten, and if I were a judge, I might agree. But as a breeder, we look at our cats differently. I know BeeDo is going to be much better then JoJo when she grows up, even though at this stage she may not be the better kitten. But I see what's in there, and I truly cannot wait to see her grow up.
I love everything about her. I love the roundness and placement of her ears. I love her "almost round" eyes, that sometimes (when I wave a toy around) has that super sweet expression the standard asks for, and sometimes she clearly has that wilder "don't mess with me" look on her face. Her muzzle is so nice and rounded already and she has a nice, deep and rounded chin. Her body is to die for, heavy and rock solid, and her coat, even though still too soft and "cottony" as a kitten, will end up being gorgeous, thick and dense. She has thick tree trunk legs and great boning for a girl. I feel like I am finally getting where I want to be with my breeding program. Other breeders may disagree regarding my enthusiasm for this girl, but that is fine, we don't all have the same pictures in our head of what we want our cats to look like.
Look at her! I love our little BeeDo!