Cat behaviorist Daniel “DQ” Quagliozzi quickly learned that his work involves altering the attitudes and behavior of people not cats. If every cat owner was aware of that there’d be no cat behaviorists.
I like the way he started his journey to becoming a cat behaviorist. He used to be one of those people who like to use the squirt bottle. If a neighbour’s cat came around the response was to spray water at “it” asap.
One cat, a huge black cat, refused to stay away. He came back again and again and converted Daniel. Daniel says,
“I have to respect this, so I just surrendered. And I fell in love with him.”
DQ, as he likes to be called, gained his experience working in the SPCA and progressed to delivering his expertise in cat owner’s homes. He has a cat-behavior consultancy called Go Cat Go.
He admits that he is a “sort of like a family counsellor”.
The point he makes – judging by what he says – is that cat owners have to fit in with the lifestyle desires of the cat – “A cat does not answer to you…”. Cat owners can’t impose their will on their cat although some try. They may end up calling a cat behaviorist like DQ.
Correctly, he feels he is the voice of the cat telling the cat owner what the cat needs to be content.
A difficulty that he encounters is the desire for quick fixes in the modern world, which are not possible with respect to cat behavior “problems” because it means often means changing ingrained habits, routines and attitudes (of people).
DQ admits that it can be difficult to get people to spend time with their cat. He implies that people use the “I’m too busy” reason for not spending time with their cat to provide stimulation. It is probably frustrating because what some clients are in effect saying is that they are too busy to commit to accepting and complying with his advice. I am sure some of his clients hope for some sort of quick fix that does not involve the owner doing much.
DQ is due to participate in a upcoming TV show, Animal House about building ideal animal shelters.
He’ll probably need to change attitudes in the shelter business too, which he admits may be tricky.