Cristin Tamburo, CFTBS, CAFTP
Certified Feline Behavior Consultant & Founder of The Cat Counselor
Cristin Tamburo, AKA The Cat Counselor, has spent years volunteering with local rescue organizations in Los Angeles. She earned her CFTBS (Certified Feline Training and Behavior Specialist) and CAFTP (Certified Advanced Feline Training Professional). She has experience working with many cat behavior problems, and her mission is to help reduce the number of cats who are relinquished to shelters for behavioral issues. With a little environmental enrichment, behavior modification, and positive reinforcement, many issues can be easily resolved or reduced.
What inspired you to work with animals?
When I moved to California eight years ago, I adopted Lynx & Bear — two Siamese littermates who were rescued from a high-kill shelter and hand reared (bottle fed) by a foster. They are such magical little souls that I began volunteering with a rescue group (kittenrescue.org) in many different capacities and eventually began fostering. Fast forward a few years and I had six cats (now seven). I realized that I needed to find a more sustainable way to keep cats out of the shelter — keeping all of them wasn’t going to work! So I went through my certification process and launched The Cat Counselor.
What is The Cat Counselor’s mission/philosophy?
The Cat Counselor is dedicated to improving the lives of cats and their guardians. By helping pet parents better understand their cat’s needs and behaviors, we are able to identify the root of their behaviors and strengthen their relationships. Through education, environmental enrichment, behavior modification and positive reinforcement, we are able to significantly improve or resolve most behavioral issues.
What keeps you motivated to help pets and their parents?
My motivation really comes from helping cats and their humans. I absolutely love receiving progress updates! It’s so rewarding to know that through our sessions, I’ve been able to make a positive impact on so many cats and their humans. Shy, fearful, and under-socialized cats are also very near and dear to my heart. Being able to rehabilitate cats who may otherwise have been euthanized in the shelter and watching them come out of their shell and learn to trust is truly an experience like no other!
What is your best piece of pet parenting advice?
The two pieces of advice that I give to EVERY cat parent I come across: play with your cat every day and make sure they are seen by the veterinarian at least once a year.
What’s the wildest part of your job?
Honestly, I still think my whole job is wild! The Cat Counselor really started off as a sort of “passion project” and I never expected it to take off like it has. In three years, I’ve been in close to 400 peoples homes and have worked with more than 1,000 cats.
Ultimately, I’m just grateful that the status of cats is beginning to change and that people are starting to realize that we can help their cats (and themselves). I’ve met so many amazing humans and cats throughout this journey so far and I’m thankful for each and every one of them. It’s definitely been a wild ride, and I’m so blessed to be able to use my passion to make a difference.
Articles featuring Cristin Tamburo, CFTBS, CAFTP
How to DIY a Catio
Cat behaviorist Cristin Tamburo’s tips for building a safe outdoor space for your cat.
8 Litter Box Enclosures That Aren’t Total Eyesores
Keep your cat’s litter box out of sight — but easy to scoop.
Holy “Twilight” — Can Your Cat Imprint on You?
This has nothing to do with werewolves named Jacob, but here are 10 signs this is happening.
How to Play with Your Cat
Cat behaviorist Cristin Tamburo’s got a game plan.
7 High-Tech Toys Your Cat Will Go Wild For
Stoke your little lion’s hunting instinct with these electronic cat toys.