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HomeCats NewsGraduating Fresno ’Dog Now Devoted to Serving to Cats

Graduating Fresno ’Dog Now Devoted to Serving to Cats

FRESNO STATE — A few of Valerie Guzman’s earliest childhood reminiscences embrace taking in stray cats along with her household of their Santa Maria condominium. “We would take in the cats that no one wanted – some were pregnant, had health problems or were infested with fleas,” Guzman mentioned. “We would nurse them back to health and find them a home.”

Image of Valerie Guzman.

Picture by Cary Edmondson.

Guzman earned bachelor’s levels from Long Beach State University with a double main in baby improvement and household training in 2016. However after 4 years of working with youngsters with behavioral issues, she was drawn to use what she had discovered about behaviors to serving to “unadoptable” cats.

Regardless of strain from her mother and father to cool down and have a household, Guzman mentioned she determined to comply with her goals and pursue a grasp’s diploma in Utilized Habits Evaluation at Fresno State. This system emphasizes conduct analytic purposes with sometimes creating and developmentally disabled youngsters and adults. Nonetheless, Guzman’s analysis attracts a parallel to her work with animal conduct. “We focus on behavior, and behaviors are everywhere, including animals” Guzman mentioned. “Within my thesis, I’m presenting that assessments that we use with humans can also be successful with animals because it’s not dependent on the population, but the behavior.”

Image of the Save Mart Center logo. Guzman will rejoice incomes her grasp’s diploma at Fresno State’s College of Science and Mathematics graduation ceremony at 5 p.m. on Friday, Could 20, on the Save Mart Center.

“On one hand my parents didn’t understand why I wanted to go back to school after receiving my bachelor’s degree. On the other hand, I know that furthering my education would change my life trajectory,” Guzman mentioned. Guzman was thrilled when she was accepted into the grasp’s program, and jumped on the alternative to analysis animal conduct alongside Dr. Steven Payne within the Psychology Division. Payne helped set up a partnership with Valley Animal Center, a shelter that helps 1000’s of cats and canines discover loving properties every year.

Image of Valerie with a cat.

Picture by Cary Edmondson.

“Since we started our partnership eight years ago, my lab has been focused on increasing the welfare of shelter animals,” Payne mentioned. “Valerie fits in well with our lab’s mission, and her research is on the cutting edge of the animal shelter literature.” Guzman researched trial-based useful evaluation instruments to find the motivations behind “unadoptable” cats’ behaviors. In her analysis, she labored with three cats that had displayed aggressive behaviors: 11-year-old Friday, 6-year-old Sonny and 2-year-old Princess Rosalinda.

“Everyone has heard of a dog trainer but has never heard of a cat trainer,” Guzman mentioned. “The key to successful training is to figure out what triggers the repeated behavior and what the cat gets from displaying that particular behavior so you can change the conditions.” All three of the cats within the examine confirmed important enchancment of their aggressive conduct. The behavioral strategies utilized by Payne and Guzman might be relayed to employees in hopes of serving to extra cats get the chance to be adopted.

Image of the Valley Animal Shelter logo. “Our long-lasting partnership with Valley Animal Center has led to fantastic outcomes for the animals, for Fresno State students and for research in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis,” Payne mentioned. “We hope to continue helping animals in the Central Valley far into the future.”

Guzman explains there’s a stigma that cats can’t be educated. “I don’t want my research to end here – I want to teach others about these methods.” Her final aim is to begin a non-profit to coach employees on efficient behavioral strategies. “I want to give every cat a chance at adoption.”

By Selene Kinder.

Image of a cat with a piece of string on its head.

“I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul.” — Jean Cocteau

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Daniel Husband
Daniel Husbandhttps://petnews2day.com
I'm the editor for Pet News 2Day. I also a dog groomer for almost 5 years plus work along side my wife with her dog walking business too so I really understand the pet industry.

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