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Esther has a MSc in Biology and a PhD in stress physiology. As a qualified cat behaviour consultant in the Netherlands, she inspires owners to give their cats the best possible living environment and helps them to understand their cat’s behaviour better. Esther writes science-based articles for the Dutch Cat Knowledge Centre (‘Katten Kenniscentrum Nederland’) and volunteers in a local shelter. As a post-doctoral researcher she studied psychological factors involved in the process of dog acquisition. Together with Dr Marsha Reijwart, Esther conducts scientific studies on cat behaviour and welfare (as the ‘Purr Doctors’); their current research focusses on welfare in multi-cat homes and the owner-cat relationship. Esther is fascinated by the complexity and diversity of animal behaviour, including people. She is especially interested in human perceptions of animals and how attitudes and (unconscious) beliefs about the benefits of companion animals influence their welfare.

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