BA (Hons - 1st), MCFBA, CIDBT
Anita is one of the most sought after cat behaviour experts in the UK with a first class honours degree (work based studies) in Feline Behaviour and Psychology. She also received the Gerry Fowler Prize for achievement in recognition of her work and final result. She has had a passion for cats her entire life and works with them every day, either caring for them, grooming them or solving behaviour problems – often performing all three roles simultaneously! She is also the owner and full-time slave of two stunning Norwegian Forest cats.
Anita founded the successful pet-sitting company Catnips in Notting Hill, which cares exclusively for cats, before training to be a professional cat groomer, specialising in grooming long-haired breeds such as Persians, Ragdolls, Maine Coons and Norwegian Forests.
After helping many of her grooming and cat-sitting clients with behavioural problems in her spare time and achieving excellent results, Anita decided to turn her passion and natural aptitude for cat behaviour and psychology into a career choice and tracked down the perfect teacher – renowned cat specialist and biologist Roger Tabor, who also happened to be the only cat studies tutor at The Cambridge Institute of Dog Behaviour and Training.
Anita had been unofficially studying cat psychology and behaviour for years, before deciding to take this passion to the next level and passed all four cat psychology and behavioural courses, with high marks. She was offered a place at Middlesex University to continue her studies in this field from which she graduated, not only with a first and a further distinguished award for excellent research results. Her study in this area has greatly helped with handling difficult or aggressive cats during the grooming process and many clients have commented on Anita’s unique way of listening to the cats and working with them, rather than against them, which is the more usual habit amongst cat groomers.
Anita’s objective has always been to gain the best understanding possible of everything cat, their origins, habits, patterns within their species, health, diet, breed personalities, needs connected to that breed – she wants to help change any problematic relationship between cat owners and their cats to harmonious. She has a particular leaning towards helping owners understand the needs of their indoor cats and, although not an advocate of keeping housebound animals, Anita will work hard towards getting the balance right in the home so that the cat has the happiest possible life indoors.
Anita’s passion for cats, her friendly outgoing personality, and her endless desire to lend a helping hand to cat owners is being noted by a steadily increasing number of distinguished vets, including Hyde Park Vets and Addisons Vets in Holland Park, who both refer grooming clients to her on a regular basis. Not being a qualified veterinarian herself, Anita holds a certificate in Feline First Aid, which she acquired with the help of Animal Aiders.
Anita also assists The Mayhew Rescue Centre as a re-homing officer for rescue cats, checking prospective owner’s homes and interviewing them. After meeting them she has given many clients assistance during the (sometimes) difficult settling-in period when a rescue cat moves into a new home. When she has spare time Anita can be often found sitting quietly with the more shy or nervous cats at The Mayhew, giving much needed reassurance and TLC.
Anita’s first debut book Claws, Confessions Of A Cat Groomer was published by John Blake in September 2017 with a new book to hit the shelves shortly. She is also a features writer for Your Cat magazine (as well as being on their experts panel giving advice on cat grooming and cat behaviour),The Cats Protection magazine ‘The Cat’ as well as contributing regular articles for The Vet Times and The CFBA website and magazine. Anita believes that the key to a happy cat is education of the owner, helping the human to see and understand how a cat sees the world and the space it lives in.
Anita is a full member of the CFBA. In 2018 Anita was nominated and won an award from Global Heath Pharma for best feline behaviourist and groomer in the Animal Health and Wellness category. See GHP image top right.
Anita is happy to give telephone and email consultations as well as home visits (the latter which she recommends on most occasions) on any cat behavioural issues and will consider travelling anywhere in the country within a reasonable distance.
A true friendly down-to-earth professional with a big heart!