Behavior

Behavior problems are the main reason that pets are surrendered to animal shelters. In recent years, the science of treating behavior problems has advanced steadily. We now have a greater understanding of problem behaviors as well as appropriate treatment strategies. When behavioral concerns are successfully managed, the relationship between pets and their people improves.

Our behaviorist, Dr. Ellen Lindell is an experienced board-certified veterinary specialist, is trained to treat conditions that are behavioral as well as those with an underlying medical cause. Whether focusing on prevention or treatment, our behavior service can improve pet well-being, thereby strengthening the bond between pets and owners.

We offer comprehensive consultations to evaluate your pet and explain the reasons for any undesirable behaviors. If needed, underlying medical conditions that might affect behavior will be reviewed to make a proper diagnosis. We’ll create a customized treatment plan outlining the steps needed to control the behavior. Most treatment plans involve both environmental and behavioral modification. Some pets can benefit from medications as well. Some common issues we can help resolve include:

  • Aggressive behavior
  • House soiling
  • Destructive behavior
  • Anxiety
  • Hyperactivity
  • Jumping up and mouthing
  • Excessive vocalization
  • Fear of thunderstorms

Prevention is important for keeping small issues from growing into major ones. Certain anticipated lifestyle changes have the potential to create distress for your pet. These may include a new home, job, pet, or person joining the household. Aging pets may benefit from enrichment programs to prevent or reduce the progression of cognitive decline. Evaluation of new kittens or puppies allows early identification of fear and aggression; early intervention may prevent the development of future problems.

Our behavior service can even assist you before you bring your new pet home. When you are considering whether to adopt, we can help you make the most appropriate choice to ensure a good match and successful long-term relationship. Pre-adoption counseling appointments are available to discuss breed-specific personality tendencies. Temperament testing is also available to determine whether the specific dog or cat you are considering for adoption will thrive in your particular home environment.

There are countless benefits to sharing life with a well behaved pet. Please allow us to address any behavioral concerns you may have early on. We encourage you not to give up on your pet! For more information on pet behavior visit The American College of Veterinary Behaviorists.