My name is Stephanie Merlin and I live in Orlando, FL. I have been a cat volunteer at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando since 2013. I have over 600 hours of service and my duties include socializing cats, providing enrichment, and helping match cats with potential adopters. I have been awarded volunteer of the month in July 2016 and have been promoted to Lead Volunteer where I assist in training new volunteers.
My years as a volunteer and working with cats have inspired me to pursue certification to become a Feline Training & Behavior Specialist (CFTBS). I am starting my certification program in June via the accredited Animal Behavior Institue. My goal is for all cats to have happy and fulfilling lives. One of the reasons cats are rehomed, relinquished, or have trouble finding homes are due to behavioral issues. Cats are unique animals with complex personalities. I see it as my job to identify a cat's individual personality and characteristics so I can adapt to their needs, earn their respect, and find out how to achieve fulfillment for them and their caregivers. I want to help facilitate a better connection between people and cats.
While I am working on my certification this blog will serve as a place where I post on a variety of cat-related topics (behavior, enrichment, adoption, shelters, training, and etc). When I receive my certification I will continue this blog but also begin offering behavior and adoption counseling services locally and nationally (via Skype, phone, or email).