You've heard of famous dog behavioural expert Cesar Millan. Now meet his cat counterpart, Jackson Galaxy. But Galaxy, born Richard Kirschner, brushes aside comparisons with the Dog Whisperer.
"We do two different things with two different species," said the cat behaviourist and host of American television series My Cat From Hell matter of factly. The show, which first aired on Animal Planet (Asia) in 2012, follows the 49-year-old as he helps pet owners resolve their issues with ill-behaved cats.
Galaxy also baulked at being called a "cat whisperer". "I'd rather be seen as somebody who teaches people how to speak cat and who helps increase empathy towards all animals," he said.
The cat expert does not exactly "talk" to cats. Rather, he observes their behaviour and reacts to them.
He was speaking to My Paper over the phone yesterday, ahead of his first appearance in Singapore on Aug 1 as part of My Cat From Hell's Asia tour. The show's sixth season premieres here on Wednesday on pay TV.
Galaxy will be talking about common bad cat behaviour and offer tips on cat care between 2pm and 3.30pm, and between 6pm and 7.30pm at the B1 Star Plaza in The Star Vista. Admission is free.
The event will also feature a cat adoption drive organised by Animal Planet. Supported by the Cat Welfare Society and Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority, the drive will take place between 11am and 8pm.
As for his critics, Galaxy is unaware of them, he said with a laugh. "I'm sure some people have said nasty things about me, but I haven't heard them and don't tell me if you do. People may not like the way I dress, my beard, or say I'm weird."
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