The Cat Coach to Offer Classes in Cat Behavior

We have all heard about the horse whisperer and the dog whisperer, but what about a cat whisperer? Well, now you have it! Renowned cat coach, Marilyn Kreiger, is often referred to as the cat whisperer. Keriger is a certified cat behavior consultant and she will be offering two telecourses on cat behavior in July. The first one is titled, “Introducing the New Cat to the Resident Cat without Stress,” and will be on July 16th at 9 p.m. ET. The telecourses are being sponsored by

Kreiger helps cat owners resolve unwanted behaviors, such as inappropriate elimination, spraying, aggression, scratching and more. She uses behavior modification techniques along with positive reinforcement while teaching the cat owner the right way to interact with their cat to correct behavior problems and avoid behavior issues in the future.

Kreiger is a certified cat behavior consultant who has been successfully solving cat behavior problems since 1990. She is the resident cat behaviorist for Cat Fancy magazine’s web site. She also authors the Ask the Cat Coach for Animal Radio Network’s monthly magazine. Based in Northern California, Marilyn donates her expertise to the Peninsula Humane Society, which has honored her for her efforts to keep cats from being surrendered unnecessarily due to fixable behavior problems.

Nationally recognized as being one of the country’s foremost behavior experts on Bengal Cats, domestic cats which are descendants of Asian Leopard Cats, Marilyn spearheads coordinated rescue work in California for these beautiful felines. She also is a Filial Bengal Cat Consultant (FBBC).

Marilyn teaches cat behavior telecourses for companion animal professionals through Raising Canine. She also teaches a series of mini-seminars at For Other Living Things in Sunnyvale, CA.

She is a proud certified member of the IAABC (International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants).


Understanding Your Cat’s Body Language

Just like humans, cats have an unspoken way of telling others when they are angry, annoyed, happy or scared. By understanding your cat’s body language, you can create a closer relationship and also avoid those nasty scratches. It is also important to teach children to recognize when kitty is getting annoyed with all the tail and ear pulling.

  1. Your kitty greets you at the door and rubs on your legs. His ears are up and his tail is up. He is happy you’re home and excited to see you.
  2. Kitty is laying on his side, eyes half open, half asleep half away. He is content, but keeping an eye on what’s going on around him.
  3. Ears are down and back, tail is swishing from side to side. Kitty is getting annoyed and if you keep it up, there will probably be blood shed.
  4. Back is arched, tail is fluffed up, ears are flat. Kitty is very angry and you might lose an eye if you get too close. This can also be accompanied by a low growl.
  5. Tail straight up, waving slightly, eyes bright, ears up, whiskers forward. Something very interesting has caught kitty’s attention and he’s willing to see what exactly it is.

Although this is by no means a complete list, it gives you an idea of the basic communications for cat language. They have a variety of “tells” that let you read his or her mood and might vary between cats. The most important thing to do is just observe your cat’s behavior and you will learn to tell what kind of mood he is in.

Homemade Cat Scratching Post

I was surfing the ‘net looking for nothing in particular and I came across this article on how to make your own cat scratching post from It really is easy to make one yourself, so if you’re feeling crafty, have at it!

My cat has taken to scratching on the corner of my brand new mattress and box spring, which is rather infuriating, given the cost of a new bed. They do have one of those scratchy cardboard circles, but all that does is get tiny bits of cardboard EVERYWHERE, so this homemade scratch pole sounds like a good option. You could even dress it up with a perch or something like that if you get a tall enough pole!

Here’s the article:

How To Build A Scratching Post

Making a Sisal Wrapped Scratching Post

This scratching post has been cat tested and approved by various felines. If you would rather buy this scratcher already made, Mr. Spatz makes a scratcher called the Scratch’R Cizer that you can purchase.

Here is a list of the supplies needed (These supplies can be purchased at any building supply store).

  • One cedar post that is about 30″ tall and at least 4″ in diameter
  • A bundle of non-oiled sisal rope measuring a 1/2″ wide
  • A piece of 3/4″ plywood to make the base sturdy (at least 16 x 16 diameter)
  • 1/2″ roofing nails
  • Four 3/4″ 16d coated sinker nails

The requirement for this type of scratching post has come from our “cat testers.” The reasoning behind this cat post is simple. A post should be as high as your cat is tall when he is fully stretched out plus a few inches. The post should also be wide enough that your cat can sit on top and survey his surroundings. The base should be sturdy enough that the post will not tip over. Once a post tips over on a cat it is very hard to convince a cat to use the post again. The post should be wrapped with sisal rope

because cats like something to dig their nails into.

DIRECTIONS: Before beginning you will want to make sure your post is dry so that there will not be any shrinking of the post after the sisal is wrapped on. To make the post you might want to wear a pair of work gloves when you wrap the sisal around the post. To start you will want to nail the beginning of your rope all the way around the top of the post. Then you wind the rope around and around and around the post very tightly so that there is no air space between the pieces of rope. This process will take you all th e way down to the bottom, once again nail the end of your rope all the way around the bottom of the post. Next you will want to nail the base on to the post, use about four nails and pound them through the bottom of the plywood base and into the bottom of the post. You no have a cat approved scratching post!

TRAINING: To introduce the post to your cat you may want to use catnip as a lure for older cats (kittens younger then 5 months of age are not affected by catnip). Rub the catnip right into the rope so that the cat can smell that wonderful smell. Once your cat has smelled the catnip scratch your nails, gently, along the surface of the rope. This will help teach your cat where to scratch. Once your cat begins to scratch, praise your cat, tell them what a good cat they are. You could also reward your cat with a food t reat, cats love treats. This post can help save your furniture, if your cat is using a certain corner of the couch for a scratching post start out your new post right by the corner of the couch. Cover that corner of the couch with double-sided sticky tape that is completely unattractive to your cat (the tape can easily be removed for entertaining company). This will repel your cat away from your couch and right there is a post that they will love. If this does not work for you please contact us and let us help find an effective solution for you and your cat.

If you make the scratching post, send us your pictures and story! E-mail them to msommerville AT