Kevin Mahon, Zoologist and PhD Student in Animal Behaviour and Welfare

Hello there! My name is Kevin Mahon and I’m a PhD student at the UNiversity of Lincoln. My background is in Zoology and Animal Behaviour. I got my BSc (Hons) at NUI Galway in Ireland and a Masters of Research from the University of Glasgow.

My project, which is to be carried out in parallel with Naima, has two main aspects.

The first aim is to determine the behavioural shifts, and welfare implications for cats that are contained. I will be using techniques such as passive avoidance to determine important factors like motivaiton in the cats that are being contained.

In addition to this, through the use of surveying, I aim to qualify and quantify the perceived risks to cats that wander from home as well as gauge opinion amongst both cat owners and non cat owners on a variety of topics, ranging from problems associated with wandering cats going into other properties to attitudes towards the containment of animals in general. This survey will be online and a link will be available on this site!

Another part of my project is a qualitative analysis of attiudes to wandering cats; specifically comparing owner and non-owner responses through thematic analysis. The aspect of the prohect is being conducted alongside a fellow PhD student in the School of Social Sciences. This is being done through semi-structured informal interviews with volunteers.

Naima Kasbaoui, veterinarian and PhD student in Animal Behaviour and Welfare



My name is Naima Kasbaoui. I’m a veterinarian, undertaking a PhD in animal behaviour and welfare at the University of Lincoln. I am studying the impact of a specific containment system on cats’ welfare, alongside with my colleague, Kevin Mahon.

The first part of my project is to study the risks for a cat to go outside, using two approaches:

–        A human based approach, consisting in a very intense survey of pre-determined areas, asking questions about cats, containment and the risks for them to go outside, according to people living in the community.

–        A cat-based approach, equipping cats with GPS to collect data about what they do when they are outside.

The second part of my project is to study the emotional state of cats exposed to electronic boundary fence system, again using to approaches:

–        First we will study cats that are already exposed to the system

–        Second we will study cats that will be exposed to the system because the owner decided to install it, and we will study them both before and after the installation


More information to come about the project in the newsletters !!