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Sydney Animal Behaviour Service - For Trainers

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Referring a Training Client?

Sydney Animal Behaviour Service is happy to accept referrals directly from trainers. Often a good trainer is the first person to notice that an animal's behaviour is not quite right, and early referral can make a huge difference to the progression of the problem. Trainer referrals may come from a class type training situation, including puppy class, or from one-on-one type training.  The important thing is that any behaviour problem is quickly differentiated from a training problem, before the problem worsens.

What should I do before referring a case??

In most cases we would prefer an animal that is to be referred has had a full medical check-up to ensure there is no underlying medical reason for the animal's behaviour. In most cases this may includes a physical examination, a full blood profile, and in the cases of inappropriate elimination, urinalysis or faecal examinations. You can refer the client to their regular veterinarian for this.

It is also a good idea to contact us, as your history is also important. Many trainers will send their training notes as part of the animal's history, along with their observations when trying to work with the problem behaviour. The more information we have, the better!

Can I be included?

With the client's consent, we are happy to send referring trainers a copy of the patients discharge instructions. In many cases the trainer will be included in the ongoing support and management of the case. Most cases will have behaviour modification exercises that the owners are required to work on. Many owners find it extremely helpful to have a trainer help them with their behaviour modification exercises, and we encourage you to stay in the 'loop' by assisting in this way. If you have any questions about this role, please do not hesitate to contact our staff.

I am having trouble convincing my client that they need to see a Veterinary Behaviourist. What can I do?

Most trainers have had experience over a large number of pets, and quickly recognise abnormal behaviour when they see it. For pet owners though, the differences may not be obvious, or the consequences of a particular behaviour may not be understood fully. A good trainer knows where the line is between a true behaviour problem and a training problem and will refer a client when necessary. They understand that some problems cannot be fixed with training, and work very hard not to worsen a situation by giving poor advice.

If your client is unsure about what you are recommending, please feel free to download and print "Why Have I been Referred to a Veterinary Behaviourist?", to help them understand your reasons for referring.

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Last modified: January 30, 2020