When you have a cranky kitty who won’t play nice with people or other cats, or is climbing your curtains, it can all start to drive you batty. Sure, you can try keeping your cat locked up in a room by itself, but is that the kind of life you really want for them?

Even worse is having to constantly clean up after a cat who happily urinates or sprays on your bed, carpet, walls and furniture instead of the litter box.

So unless you’re keen on cat fights and vet bills, or regularly replacing urine stained carpet and furniture (like some clients of mine regularly did) what are you to do? If your cat’s behavior problems have gotten so bad that you now think relinquishment is your only option, please know there is another way.

You don't have to relinquish your cat

Yes you may be at odds with your cat right now, but if you put your emotional reactions to what has occurred in the past and change your attitude to focus on helping them succeed, you can keep them in your loving home.

If you really love your cat and are ready to look at their behavior problems from a compassionately different view, then I can help you understand the underlying cause or need for their current behavior, as well as how to shape and train the desirable behavior you want.

A majority of the time it’s simply a lack of understanding your cat, stress in your environment, how you respond, and the use of punishment that lead to, anxiety, fear and uncertainty with your cat.

In almost all cases, these things lead to an increase in the undesirable behavior.

Helping you and your cat transform undesirable
behavior is what I do best

I have completed all coursework for a Master of Science in Applied Animal Behavior Science and Family Counseling for Companion Animals. And I was blessed to work with one of the top veterinary behaviorists in the country, Patrick Melese, DVM, DACVB.

During my 5 years of clinical practice with him I saw hundreds of families with dogs and cats with serious behavior problems.

How I help you and your cat live in harmony

Cats love me because (I love them!) and whether in person, by phone or over the internet, I help their owners know how to observe, listen and communicate with them in a way they can understand. Owners love me because of my compassionate, non-judgmental approach to their situation.

If I suspect your pet has an underlying medical condition that is causing the behavior problem I will advise you how to rule that out first. We’ll also look at what your options are if behavior medication might help.

What chronically unacceptable behavior
are you experiencing with your cat?

The following is a list of feline behavior problems that I can help you with. The good news is that many of these problems can be successfully addressed with an appropriate treatment plan, practice and patience.

House soiling (the #1 reason cats are relinquished!)

Aggression (the #2 reason cats are relinquished)

Fears and phobias

Ready to get professional help for your
cat's chronic behavior problems?

Francine has 3 ways you can work with her: At your home, by phone or online.

If you live in San Diego and surrounding cities you can have Francine visit you at your home. If you live outside the San Diego area Francine can just as effectively help you through phone or online.
No matter how you choose to work with Francine, you’ll get a behavior consultation for your pet that includes:

Follow up is important…

Based on what you’re experiencing when implementing Francine’s behavior plan you may need additional support. She can answer quick questions via email, but anything more will require either a phone consultation or in person follow-up with Francine. Follow up is typically critical to the successful resolution of most cases, but how many follow ups and how often is very dependent on the problem, the patient(s) and you!

Frequently asked questions about cat
behavior consultations...

Francine will start by learning as much as possible about your family and your pet with a specific focus on the presenting behavior problem(s) through the Behavior History Form that you will complete. By reviewing that document she makes a behavioral assessment. This means that she’ll determine exactly what the problem(s) is and why it is occurring, so that she knows how to solve it. She’ll then develop a treatment plan to solve the behavior problem. This is the focus of the consultation.

Then, she’ll take you step-by-step through the treatment plan, teaching you how to make the changes necessary to help your cat. These include physiological interventions, environmental changes, behavior modification exercises, and a discussion of training aids and behavior products that may be imperative for success. After the consultation she provides you with a written summary of what was discussed, along with detailed instructions on specific behavior modification exercises

I can help by phone or web because I am not teaching the cat, I am teaching YOU what to do with your cat. Although I would absolutely love to meet every cat on the planet, I make myself available through phone or web consults in order to help the most people. Unfortunately many people cannot find an educated, qualified behaviorist in their area.

Even if I see your cat in person I will not try to elicit bad behaviors. If you have a video of your cat’s behavior problem I would be happy to watch it. But, I don’t need to see the problem in action to make an assessment. I rely on the Behavior History Form to do that. That’s why it’s so important to complete that fully and completely. We want to stop your cat from practicing undesirable behavior(s) as soon as possible.

If you are patient, motivated, capable, and have time in your schedule to work with your cat, most behavior problems can be improved with my help. Success depends greatly on the people carrying out the treatment plan (your compliance) and on the individual cat. The prognosis for your pet will be discussed at the time of your consultation after the cat has been evaluated.

That’s up to you. The more effort you put into the work required, the more results you should see. It’s also up to your cat. Every cat is an individual and learns at a different rate. This is where your patience comes in. The severity of the problem and how long it has been going on also play a key role in how long it may take for the problem to resolve.