Shonagh Staten is an accredited advanced feline behaviourist who works with cats both privately and voluntarily. As well as offering a free online advisory service to cat owners around the globe, she also assists a number of rescue organisations locally to her with both behavioural and rehoming issues, promoting and endorsing their online presence. She is a voluntary animal welfare advisor to a national charity established to assist those affected by poverty; providing dietary and financial recommendations to those struggling with veterinary fees.
What is a feline behaviourist?
As the name suggests, a feline behaviourist is someone who has studied cats extensively to learn a little about how they think by observing their behaviour. People do this for a variety of reasons, but I chose to study this subject because cats have always fascinated me and I wanted to be able to help people co-exist with their feline family member when situations arose that they found difficult to deal with.
A cat’s psychology is as unique and complex as a humans, but as with people there are certain techniques that help cats adapt their natural behaviours in a home environment so there is a less stressful atmosphere if the behaviours in question are something that is disruptive to the human family members.
What are common issues dealt with by behaviourists?
Common issues can vary, from cats that are toileting inappropriately to cats that are seemingly acting aggressively. There are a lot of signals a cat gives that can be misread and a feline behaviourist is trained to pick up on them and offer suggestions that may make things easier for all concerned.