The Royal Decree refers to many European guidelines and directives. It is as likely as desirable that comparable rules are effective or will enter into force in other EU Member States soon.
One of the consequences of this decree is that breeders are required to have a certificate, showing their specific competences. Getting such a certificate demands time and money. Quality is seldom for free. This will no doubt have impact on the breeding sector. It is supposed that commercial catteries ("kitten mills") will either improve their performance or quit. The same counts for small catteries with low welfare standards. Animal welfare needs to improve. In our eyes it would be very helpful if unannounced surveillance activities of catteries would take place too.
What is animal welfare? In the decree, that contains over 140 pages, there are many hints. Animal welfare is counted 191 times in the text, but no definition is given. Felikat describes responsible breeding and keeping of cats. Fifé imposes minimum standards, that are obligatory for members and may be refined when desired.
We at Titran's have certain ideas about animal welfare. Have a look at our pictures and movies! Our female adults live on around 300 sqft each. Our males live separated from our females. They live in spacious, comfortable, heated cat runs and have daily access to the fenced patio outside the house, but only with our consent. Every cat and kitten gets daily attention and high quality food and, if required, medical care. Health is our no.1 priority.
There is no law or rule that addresses love and attention. We all know that babies and children who are deprived from that may develop into anti-social beings. Kittens are no different. In practice we see big differences over catteries. Commercial catteries don't care about it. Small catteries may over-cherish their kittens and tend to keep them for ever. We love our kittens as their mothers do. And similar to our females we have learned to detach after 12 weeks.
We always try to imagine how our kittens may do in their new homes. Therefore we ask questions about the living conditions at the potential owners. The interaction between man and woman, between parents and children and between new owners and cats provides a lot information we don't need to ask for explicitly. A healthy and well socialized kitten that doesn't feel well at his or her new home may develop stress related diseases. Be aware that a cat has no boss. If a cat doesn't feel at home it will affect its well-being. And if its well-being is not OK, yours (and ours) will not be too.
Yes, our kittens are beautiful and charming. We believe that people who show immunity for these little creatures have a heart of stone. Being in love with one of our cats is certainly good for human welfare.