Coping Cat

Coping Cat is a cognitive-behavioral treatment for children with anxiety. The program incorporates 4 components: Recognizing and understanding emotional and physical reactions to anxiety, clarifying thoughts and feelings in anxious situations, developing plans for effective coping, evaluating performance and giving self-reinforcement. The Coping Cat Workbook for anxiety integrates empirically-supported CBT to reduce anxious distress in youth. This newest edition is a revision of the original Coping Cat Workbook by Philip Kendall that has been in use since 1992. Sixteen therapy sessions promote coping skills for dealing with anxiety. The program can be adapted for use with individual youth or with groups.

This program is approved for WV Expanded School Mental Health.

Last reviewed: 2023

Intended Outcomes:

Reduce anxiety

Continuum of Care:

Topic Areas:
Anxiety, Behavioral Health/Mental Health

Childhood (4-12), Teen/Adolescent (13-18)

Geographic Locations:
Rural, Urban

Delivery Settings:

Cultural Considerations:
A balanced amount of the research involved diverse populations

For children and adolescents ages 7-13 who are experiencing problematic levels of anxiety

Mental health professionals who are already trained in child and adolescent mental health


Is Training Required?

Who can provide the required training?
Training is available but not required. Contact the developer for more information.

Program Costs (materials, training, etc.):
Yes, refer to program website

Program/Practice Website:

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research:

McNally Keehn, R., Lincoln, A., Brown, M., & Chavira, D. (2013). The Coping Cat Program for Children with Anxiety and Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 43(1), 57–67.

Kendall, P. C. (1994). Treating anxiety disorders in children: Results of a randomized clinical trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 62(1), 100-110.

Kendall, P. C., & Southam-Gerow, M. A. (1996). Long-term follow-up of a cognitive-behavioral therapy for anxiety-disordered youth. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 64(4), 724-730.

Villabø, M. A., Narayanan, M., Compton, S. N., Kendall, P. C., & Neumer, S.-P. (2018). Cognitive-behavioral therapy for youth anxiety: An effectiveness evaluation in community practice. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 86(9), 751-764.

Walkup, J. T., Albano, A. M., Piacentini, J., Birmaher, B., Compton, S. N., Sherrill, J. T., Ginsburg, G. S., Rynn, M. A., McCracken, J., Waslick, B., Iyengar, S., March, J. S.,
& Kendall, P. C. (2008). Cognitive behavioral therapy, sertraline, or a combination in childhood anxiety. The New England Journal of Medicine, 359(26), 2753-2766.

Kendall, P. C., Flannery-Schroeder, E., Panichelli-Mindell, S. M., Southam-Gerow, M., Henin, A., & Warman, M. (1997). Therapy for youths with anxiety disorders: A second randomized clinical trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 65(3), 366-380.

Jennifer S. Silk, Patricia Z. Tan, Cecile D. Ladouceur, Suzanne Meller, Greg J. Siegle, Dana L. McMakin, Erika E. Forbes, Ronald E. Dahl, Philip C. Kendall, Anthony Mannarino & Neal D. Ryan (2016): A Randomized Clinical Trial Comparing Individual Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Child-Centered Therapy for Child Anxiety Disorders, Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, DOI: 10.1080/15374416.2016.1138408

Additional Sources:

Supported By Research

WV Rating:
Supported by Research
»WV Ratings Info

Rationale for Rating:

It is important to note the Coping Cat population of focus is youth ages 7 -13 years with a diagnosis of anxiety disorder. Coping Cat has multiple levels of intervention under the same general name, we reviewed the therapy component only. Some studies researched were older than 10 years and referred to the therapy approach by the original name (cognitive behavioral therapy for anxious children). We noted that the developer appears on several of the key research studies alongside other researchers and would like to see additional independent peer research (RCTs). We did appreciate the use of screeners and scales in all studies and the follow ups to determine long term effects. We would like to see more independent peer reviewed studies.

Contraindications or Concerns:
None identified

Other Registries/Ratings

The California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare:
Well-Supported by Research Evidence

Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development:
Not On Registry

Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness:

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Model Programs Guide:
Not On Registry

Washington State Institute for Public Policy:
Not On Registry