The purpose of this complaint is to warn others to not buy kittens from Phyllis Mikesell. We purchased a Ragdoll kitten from Phyllis on December 8, 2006. Admittingly, I should have known better. The house reeked of cat urine and there must have been 40 cats in the house. This house was the dirtiest house I have ever seen. All of the kittens were very wild, but Phyllis managed to catch the one that I wanted and we put it in the kennel. I paid $500 for the kitten and Phyllis said that she was too just busy to provide me with any papers (including a receipt) and that she would mail everything to me. When I got the kitten home, she calmed down right away and was just lovely and friendly. However, I felt some scars around her neck and was a little bit worried about distemper as she was sneezing and had runny eyes - I grew up on a cattle ranch and have seen distemper before.
I e-mailed Phyllis the following Monday (December 11) to ask her what the scars might be and she indicated that they were simply from the kittens play fighting. This seemed logical so I left it at that.
The following Monday (December 18), I noted that our chocolate lab had a scar beside his eye. I realized right away that it was ringworm. Again, I e-mailed Phyllis to let her know that I know had clued in that the scars around the kitten's neck were indeed ringworm and now my dog had it. I asked Phyllis if she was willing to pay for the vet bill that I would have to endure to have the problem fixed as when I bought the kitten Phyllis indicated that she had a health guarantee (this health guarantee is posted all over her advertisements on the internet).
Phyllis called me back (Phyllis will never respond to any e-mails) and said that she had prescription drugs that she would provide to me to treat the ringworm. She did admit that her cats had ringworm (probably best to let people know this before they bring contagious cats into their homes! ) I felt very uncomfortable taking prescription drugs from someone that is not a vet, but I stopped by her cattery Thursday evening (December 21) to pick up the medicine which came in an unmarked bottle. Phyllis also provided me with some pills which she said would stop the kitty from sneezing. I was now more than a little miffed because I really felt that Phyllis should indeed pay for the vet bill for at least the cat of which she insured me was healthy when I purchased it.
Friday morning (December 22) my son and I both woke up with ringworm. Now I am horrified. We both have it on our arms and I have it on my chin as well. I immediately called our vet to make an appointment. My vet was horrified. He had not even seen ringworm for years and said that it was not a common occurence (as Phyllis had indicated). He knew the drug that Phyllis had provided me with and said that it would work for the cat, but not for the dog. Phyllis had said to administer the same drug on both the cat and the dog. The vet was also not impressed that Phyllis was distributing drugs that were only to be prescribed by a Dr.
My vet bill, including the prescription, was a little over $200. The vet indicated that we should try to return the cat to Phyllis. The other alternative was to put the kitten down as although you can get rid of ringworm, the spores will still live on everything the kitten touches (the furniture, bedding, carpets, etc.). I would never return this kitten to that house. I love her already and won't put her down without trying to solve the problem first.
Next, my son and I visited the doctor. The doctor was also quite horrified at this story and is filing a report with the clinc for communicable diseases. She indicated that ringworm is extremely contagious and to have the house disinfected once the ringworm goes away on the animals. We had to get prescriptions as well.
I am keeping every receipt and filing all documentation relating to this issue. I will be filing a small claims action when the ringworm issue is resolved. This cattery should be shut down. What angers me the most is that if Phyllis had been honest with me in the first place, all could have been prevented.