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Top 29 Cat Behaviorists: Extraordinary Feline People (2024 Update)

Jordyn Alger

By Jordyn Alger

cat sit on man's lop

Cats are popular family pets that bring smiles and laughs with their silly antics. Although their quirky behavior may seem senseless to us, there is a purpose for it: communication. Through behavior and body language, our cats show their feelings and needs to us. The better we understand this method of communication, the better care we can provide for our pets.

However, sometimes, our cat’s behavior puzzles or frightens us. Caring for your cat can feel hopeless and overwhelming if they have begun to display worrying or aggressive behaviors. This is where cat behaviorists can step in.

Contacting a reputable cat behaviorist can be a beneficial first step to deciphering and eliminating unwanted behaviors. In this article, we will look at some of the most notable cat behaviorists to get you started with supportive resources.


The Top 29 Cat Behaviorists

1.  Pam Johnson-Bennett

Pam Johnson-Bennett is one of the most notable cat behaviorists in the world. She began her career in the 1970s when she experienced issues with her cats. This encouraged her to research through shelter volunteerism and veterinary conferences.

Today, Pam Johnson-Bennett is one of the most accomplished cat behaviorists, with several best-selling cat behavior books. She also provides services such as in-home and virtual cat behavior consultations. Many cat owners have been helped by Pam Johnson-Bennett’s methods, whether through her consultations, books, or blog posts.

2. Mieshelle Nagelschneider

Mieshelle Nagelschneider calls herself The Cat Whisperer, and many would agree. She began her studies in animal behavior at Oxford University, which equipped her to provide scientific research and evidence for certain cat behaviors.

Mieshelle Nagelschneider has gone on to open a clinic called The Cat Behavior Clinic as well as write scholarly-cited cat behavior books. She has also worked on National Geographic as a cat behavior expert for several documentaries.

3. Jackson Galaxy

Another well-known name in the cat behaviorist sphere is Jackson Galaxy. Jackson Galaxy, also known as Cat Daddy, started by volunteering at animal shelters, where he became intrigued by feline behavior.

As he gained more experience working with cats, he began to educate himself on why they act the way they do. From there, he hosted his own show called My Cat from Hell. Jackson Galaxy has also written several cat-related books that many pet owners have found useful, such as Cat Daddy: What the World’s Most Incorrigible Cat Taught Me About Life, Love, and Coming Clean.

4. Anita Kelsey

Anita Kelsey is an accredited cat behaviorist based in London. She has earned her honors degree at Middlesex University and has experience working with aggressive cats, cats with separation anxiety, cats with destructive behaviors, and more.

She was awarded the Best Feline Behaviorist & Groomer at the GHP Animal Health and Awareness Awards. She has written for magazines such as The Vet Times, Your Cat Magazine, and Style Tails. Also, she has authored two books: Let’s Talk About Cats. Conversations On Cat Behavior and Claws: Confessions of a Professional Cat Groomer.

5. Ingrid Johnson

Ingrid Johnson studied at The International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC) to become a certified cat consultant. She has been working with cats since 1999, giving her significant experience.

She is regularly featured in veterinary conference lectures due to her knowledge. Additionally, she leads cat behavior courses and seminars to support employees and volunteers of animal shelters. Ingrid Johnson is a strong proponent of food puzzles due to the beneficial impacts of enrichment on a cat’s mind and behavior.

6. Dr. Mikel Maria Delgado

Dr. Mikel Maria Delgado received her Ph.D. in Psychology at UC Berkeley. Her degree had an emphasis on animal behavior and cognition, which led her to work as a postdoctoral fellow at UC Davis’s School of Veterinary Medicine, where she studied the social behavior of domestic cats.

She published research in several notable journals, such as the Psychological Bulletin, the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery, and the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare. Today, Dr. Mikel Maria Delgado applies her skills by consulting with cat owners in need.

7. Marilyn Krieger

HEP_Marilyn Krieger
Photo Credit: Marilyn Krieger

Marilyn Krieger is known as the Cat Coach. She is a certified cat behaviorist internationally recognized for her specialist work and award-winning book, Naughty No More!

She has contributed to many scholarly articles, such as the Tufts University publication, Animal Behavior Consulting: Theory and Practice, and the IAABC journal. She is also considered one of the foremost experts on domestic cats with close wild cat ancestors, such as Bengals and Savannahs.

8. Lisa Stemcosky

HEP_Lisa Stemcosky
Photo Credit: Lisa Stemcosky

Lisa Stemcosky runs PawLitically Correct, which is an organization devoted to improving bonds between humans and animals by better understanding pet behaviors. PawLitically Correct offers virtual and in-home consultations for feline behavioral issues, particularly aggressive behavior, separation anxiety, and stress.

Lisa Stemcosky is a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant from the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. If you are interested in working with her, you can schedule a consultation.

9. Linda Hall

Linda Hall works closely with Rita Reimers, and they are both involved with the Cat Behavior Alliance. They have also worked together to establish the Carolina Cat Sanctuary, which is a non-profit organization that seeks to house unwanted or abandoned cats.

Linda Hall is also a certified cat behaviorist with years of experience working with cats. She is a cat mom to over 12 cats, so she knows a thing or two about their quirks!

10. Stephanie Merlin

In 2013, Stephanie Merlin began her work with cats by volunteering at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando. From that moment on, she felt that working with cats was her calling. She grew passionate about fostering connections between humans and cats, helping people to better understand the needs of their feline friends.

She is a Certified Feline Behavior Specialized through the Animal Behavior Institute and has established The Fulfilled Feline to provide trauma-informed support for cat owners in need.

11. Shani at Wild at Heart – Cat Behavior Solutions

Shani, the creator of Wild at Heart – Cat Behavior Solutions, is a specialist with a deep love and appreciation for cats. She is passionate about understanding why cats behave in certain ways and what she can do to support them through a beneficial behavioral change.

She received her Certified Feline Training and Behavior Specialist Certification from the Animal Behavior Institute. She aims to help cats live their best lives through her work at Wild at Heart.

12. Jennifer Catpurr

Jennifer Catpurr is a member of the Pet Professional Guild, which focuses on science-based training. She conducts private cat behavior and veterinary consultations for Tampa’s St. Francis Society Animal Rescue.

One of her cat training presentations was featured in the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, and she has been interviewed for articles on Chewy.com. Regarding behavior modification training, she focuses on body language, emotional support, and enrichment.

13. Dr. Marci Koski

Dr. Marci Koski is a certified feline behavior and training consultant based in Vancouver, Washington. At the Animal Behavior Institute, Dr. Marci Koski earned her advanced Feline Training and Behavior certifications. She then created her own business in 2014, Feline Behavior Solutions.

Feline Behavior Solutions’ main goal is to keep cats out of animal shelters by educating cat owners on feline behavior. The more cat owners understand their cats, the less likely they will be surrendered due to behavior.

14. LeeAnna Buis

LeeAnna Buis has been around cats her entire life; however, it wasn’t until her 40s that she truly understood them. During this time, LeeAnna Buis brought in a foster kitten with severe trauma.

She thought she was equipped to provide for his needs but soon found she was in over her head. After months of scratching, biting, and other aggressive behaviors, she feared that she would have to surrender him… until she discovered the work of Dr. Marci Koski.

As she learned more about feline behavior, she pursued a Feline Training and Behavior Specialist certification via the Animal Behavior Institute.

15. Allison Helps Cats

Allison Helps Cats
Photo Credit: Allison Helps Cats

Allision from Allison Helps Cats is a proud cat mom and supportive foster pet parent. Her love for cats compelled her to learn more about their behavioral quirks, eventually leading her to become a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant and Trainer. She currently provides individual and group support for cat owners in need, and her website contains a treasure trove of resources such as newsletters, infographics, and published articles.

16. Maria Kozlova

Maria Kozlova uses her platform to help cat owners all around the world. Her goal is to educate cat parents so that they can better understand their pet’s needs and confront behavioral problems.

She believes that cats are largely misunderstood, which causes many cats to be surrendered to shelters. By better understanding cats, cat owners will foster a strong bond with their pets and save their cats from experiencing significant abandonment and trauma.

17. Cristin Tamburo

Cristin Tamburo is also known as The Cat Counselor. As an attentive cat mom of 7 furry babies, Cristin Tamburo has dedicated the last several years to volunteering with a number of local animal shelters in Los Angeles to provide love for the unhoused cats in her area.

She has significant life experience working with cats who suffer from behavioral problems. Likewise, she obtained certification as a Certified Feline Behavior Consultant. She supports cat owners when their cats express behaviors such as spraying, aggression, and anxiety.

18. Joey Lusvardi

Joey Lusvardi is a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant who runs a behavior consultation service called Class Act Cats. While he is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and supports the surrounding areas, he is also available for virtual sessions for cat owners all around the world.

He specializes in all sorts of behavioral issues, including but not limited to biting, litter box issues, excessive vocalization, and separation anxiety. If you have an issue that you would like Class Act Cats to support you through, you can schedule a consultation no matter where you live.

19. Jennifer Van de Kieft

Jennifer Van de Kieft grew up around cats and was raised in South Brooklyn. As a result, she has been observing their behavioral quirks for years. Cat behavior soon became her passion, and she sought her feline training and behavior certification and established Cat Advocate.

She specializes mainly in feeding and house-soiling issues, but she is equipped to manage all sorts of behavior issues. She is based in Brooklyn, New York, so if you live nearby, you can consider reaching out to her for assistance.

20. Krista Schulte

Krista Schulte of Feline Behavior Coach is another great cat behaviorist. She seeks to help cats and their owners make the best of their relationship by providing personalized guidance for pet owners to create the best bond possible with their pets.

The first step to working with Krista Schulte is to schedule a complimentary assessment. This assessment will help Krista Schulte understand the nature of the problem, as feline behavioral issues can be complex.

21. Heather Alvey

Heather Alvey has over 20 years of professional experience as a cat behavioral specialist. She studied cat behavior at the Animal Behavior Institute, achieving recognition as a Certified Feline Behavior and Training Specialist.

Heather Alvey works to support cats and their owners through behavioral issues, recognizing that many humans may mistake their cat’s issues as hatred or maliciousness. She works to assure pet owners that this is not the case, educating them on the reality of their cat’s behavior to improve the bond between humans and cats.

22. Lucy Hoile

Lucy Hoile began her work as a cat behaviorist in 2010 due to her passion for cats. She never expected it to become her full-time job, but it turned out that many people were in need of her expertise and services.

She soon fell in love with supporting connections between cats and their owners and has continued to do so over the past decade. She understands how difficult it can be to live with a cat with behavioral problems, which is why she strives to listen and address the issue.

23. Laura Cassiday

Laura Cassiday is another certified cat behavior consultant who trained with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. She is also a Fear Free certified animal trainer.

She began her cat behaviorist journey by working with foster and rescue cats. This soon led her to Marland’s SPCA, where he recognized the need for a greater understanding of cat behavior.

She became the shelter’s cat behavior coordinator, improving the quality of life of the cats by providing extra enrichment opportunities. In 2021, she launched Pawsitive Vibes Cat Behavior and Training, where she provides virtual consultations and in-person assessments.

24. Lauren Parsch

Lauren Parsch is a cat behavior consultant who has been working with felines for 9 years. While she struggled to find a career that suited her, she quickly grew passionate about her pet cats. She soon became the unofficial go-to person for any cat-related problem in her sphere of friends, compelling her to research and learn more.

The more she discovered, the more she realized that cats are greatly misunderstood. She became certified in Cat Behavior Counseling and Retention so that she could strive to correct these misconceptions and provide a happy life for cats everywhere.

25. Kristiina Wilson

Kristiina Wilson has worked with domestic cats for over 20 years. She has also dedicated time to socializing feral cats and raising newborn kittens. She is likewise responsible for placing over 400 abandoned felines in their forever home, so clearly, Kristiina Wilson has a deep and profound love for cats.

She is a certified behaviorist who has presented at the Edmonton Cat Fest in 2022 and has done segments on ABC’s Nightline.

26. Stacy Ferrara

Stacy Ferrara is the owner of Pawsitive Potential, LLC, and is a Certified Advanced Feline Training Professional as well as a Certified Feline Training and Behavior Specialist. She provides in-home consultations as well as remote sessions for clients struggling with feline behavioral issues.

As a Certified Fear Free Professional, she is able to reduce a cat’s stress via positive reinforcement training methods. She is a professional member of The Animal Behavior Management Alliance and the Animal Behavior Society.

27. Marjan Debevere

Marjan Debevere is a certified, vet-referred cat behaviorist who has studied Feline Behavior and Psychology. She is a certified member of The International Society of Animal Professionals and is based in London.

She spent a decade photographing animals, in which she took pictures of over 3,000 cats. During that time, she observed and experienced a lot of feline behavior. She also noticed that many cats were surrendered due to misunderstandings about their behavior, so she became a cat behaviorist to try and change that.

28. Molly DeVoss

Molly DeVoss is passionate about reducing the number of cats that are euthanized in animal shelters. She has fostered and rescued hundreds of cats over the years, including special needs cats.

Her experience with rehabilitating cats in need has given her a unique perspective on a cat’s behavior and needs. She became a Certified Feline Training and Behavior Specialist, a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant, and a Fear Free Certified Trainer to support cats in need.

29. Elizabeth Italia

Elizabeth Italia, who also goes by Liz, is a writer and animal behaviorist. She has a certificate in Applied Animal Behavior from the University of Washington and specializes in supporting shy, anxious, or aggressive cats.

Her goal is to foster cats, work through their behavioral issues, and help them find their forever home. As a result, her home has been referred to as Liz’s Kitty Boot Camp, where cats with behavioral issues undergo amazing transformations.



It isn’t easy to deal with a cat’s behavioral problems. That is why cat behaviorists work hard to better understand the needs and behaviors of the feline so that cat owners everywhere can create healthy and powerful bonds with their pets. If you and your cat are experiencing behavioral trouble, consider reaching out to a specialist for support.

Featured Image Credit: Karpova, Shutterstock

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