Behaviour

Having problems with your pet’s behaviour?

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You’re not the only one.

Up to 85% of owners report that their pet has at least one problem behaviour that they struggle to manage. Many of these problems are driven by fear, uncertainty and anxiety and can be a huge source of chronic stress for both pets and their owners.

Dr. Chloe has a special interest in behaviour medicine.  She is currently completing further studies in this area and will sit examinations next year to earn additional qualifications in this rapidly evolving field of veterinary medicine.

She offers a behavioural consultation service to help you to diagnose and manage the problems you are seeing in your pet.

Behaviour can be very complex and an accurate diagnosis is crucial for treatment success. Prior to your consultation, it is advised that you follow the following steps:

1. Fill in a questionnaire

This questionnaire gives us a good idea of your pet’s behavioural and medical history.

We can email this questionnaire to you for you to fill in as a word document and return before your scheduled appointment.

Alternatively, you can print out the copy attached to this email and drop it into the clinic as a hard copy.

2. Take some videos

Videos are extremely helpful for interpreting the motivation behind your pet’s behaviour- the more you get the better! Please bring any videos you have with you on the day of the consultation.

Helpful things to film include:

  1. Snippets to give us a ‘day in the life’ of your pet, and how they behave normally around the home
  2. Their behaviours as you prepare to leave the home, as well as footage of their behaviour after you leave. This is particularly important if you suspect you pet is anxious while you are not home. This may involve rigging up a laptop or other device to film the area where they spend most time during the day. Call the clinic for advice on how to do this.
  3. Any behaviour that you perceive to be problematic (e.g. behaviours on lead, attention seeking, pacing around the house etc).

Please note- do not intentionally put the animal in a position that may trigger aggression in the process of gathering video footage.

3. Book in for a consult

The initial consultation will take at least an hour and will be an opportunity for Dr. Chloe to;

  • Observe your pet and assess their overall health.
  • Extrapolate on the information provided in the questionnaire
  • Give some initial recommendations on how to manage the issue
  • Demonstrate some basic exercises to try at home
  • Discuss short and long term goals of behaviour modification, and;
  • Dispense medications if necessary.

Following the initial consultation, Dr.Chloe will formulate a report outlining the diagnoses and an individualised treatment plan for your pet. We may ask you to gather more information at home (journal, videos, etc) before this report can be finalised.

How much will a consultation cost?

The cost of a behaviour consultation is $200. This includes your initial extended consultation and any follow up calls required to finalise the diagnosis and treatment report.

Are there any other potential costs?

We recommend a follow up consultation 6-8 weeks after the initial consultation to review how your pet is responding to the treatment plan and to make changes to the plan, if needed. The cost of a follow up consultation is $55.

A blood test may be recommended for your pet, especially if long-term medications are prescribed. The cost of this will vary ($109-209) depending on your pet’s age and health status.

Can all problems be managed in- house?

Just like with physical health problems, some mental health conditions are more complex than others and require referral to a specialist.

If your pet’s mental health concern(s) are particularly complex, or pose a public health concern, we may recommend your pet is referred to Sydney Animal Behavioural Service. The clinic is based in Seaforth, Sydney, though consultations by Skype or phone may be able to be arranged if necessary.

Please call the clinic if you have any further questions about this service.