How can I help you?
Do you have a behaviour concern with your companion?
Maybe your dog is being reactive to other dogs and people?
Or struggling to cope with car travel or being home alone?
Maybe your cat is toileting or fighting among other animals in the house?
No matter your behavioural problem, we are here to help!
Behaviour problems with your pet can not only be distressing for your pet but also for yourselves and other household members. Therefore, we aim to see you quickly and efficiently, to fit in with your lifestyle and plans. We aim to introduce management of the problem behaviours and start your behaviour modification programme during your first consultation.
Here at Forrest Animal Behaviour, we are here to listen to your concerns about your pet, diagnose the emotional components of the behaviour and provide treatment plans to adapt the emotions and expressions of the behaviour, which we want to change. This will mean that you get knowledge of why your pet is acting the way they are and practical skills to improve your pet’s behaviour. We will support you throughout your pet’s diagnosis, treatment and continual management of the behaviour problem.
Differences from genetics, life experiences and personalities are what makes your pet the individual they are.
This means that unfortunately, there is not a one-size-fits-all when assessing pet behaviour. This means that without finding the root cause of the behaviour, simple training might not resolve the problem behaviour. Therefore, at Forrest Animal Behaviour we aim to tailor all behaviour assessments, reports, treatment plans and behaviour modification programmes to you and your pet. We will also work with you to help find the rewards which motivate your pet to make the necessary changes.
The methods we use are science-based and ethical to your pet. This means we do not use aversive methods that cause physical or perceived pain or fear. We use training that is focused on maintaining the human-animal bond via environmental management, positive reinforcement, changing associations and increasing communication. This means we allow your pet to make their own decisions, while we guide and support them in succeeding.
Behaviour changes are not quick to resolve, they take time and patience. Often these behaviours have emotions, motivations and reinforcers attached to the presentation of the behaviour. It is like changing a habit which you do most days. For example, if I told you not to drink tea or coffee and only drink water instead, it takes motivation, emotional support and importantly other rewards to commit to this behaviour change. When we do the same for our pets and ask for these behavioural changes, it takes motivation, emotional support and importantly other rewards from you, for your companion to accept this change in routine. But don’t worry though, as we will help support you throughout the process and work at a pace in which your companion can cope and adapt to these changes.
At Forrest Animal Behaviour we adhere to conduct with the utmost professionalism and confidentially and aim to follow the professional code of conduct detailed by The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (ASAB).
Why veterinary behavioural referral?
For a complete behavioural assessment, the medical elements of your pet have to be assessed alongside the behavioural history.
Therefore, your veterinary practice must be involved in the diagnosis and treatment of problem behaviour in your pet. Recent studies have shown that up to 80% of behavioural problems can have at least one medical component which has contributed to the display of the behaviour.
If medical conditions are undiagnosed and not treated or managed, it can lead to behaviour problems never being resolved or cause relapses during treatment. This can not only be frustrating as an owner but also be unethical if your pet had medical needs not being supported.
Here at Forrest Animal Behaviour, we focus on your pet’s emotional needs and your veterinary surgeon takes care of your pet’s medical needs. As we are not qualified to provide veterinary treatment, we do not prescribe medication or diagnose medical conditions. However, we work closely with your veterinary practice to discuss concerns that might have been highlighted in your behavioural history or clinical history, for them to make decisions on necessary medications or medical examinations. This means you get a full and comprehensive treatment for your pet ensuring no elements to the behaviour problem are overlooked, thus providing a more successful outcome to the problem behaviour.
How do I arrange a Behavioural Referral for my pet?
– Contact us for a no obligation phone call
You can contact via email, phone calls, messages, Whatsapp or social media. I will then contact you to arrange a time to have a phone call to discuss your pet’s behavioural concerns.
– Veterinary Referral
Behavioural referrals are seen on veterinary referral. Therefore, your veterinary surgeon will need to be contacted to request a referral to us. Following our phone call, I will advise you to inform your vet if you would like to be referred and we can send the relevant information to your veterinary practice for completion. This might include the need for a full medical assessment by your veterinary surgeon before the referral is completed.
– Behavioural History Form
You will then be sent a behaviour history form for you to complete, which will contain questions about you, your pet and your lifestyle. Once completed we will contact you to arrange your first consultation.
– Initial Consultation
The first consultation will help to diagnose the behavioural problem and introduce the start of your behavioural modification plan. It will last around 1.5-2 hours and can be completed in the comfort of your own home or online if you prefer.
– Behavioural report
Following your consultation, you will receive an electronic copy of your behavioural report, detailing our assessment of your pet, how to manage the behaviour concern and the starting plans to the adaptation of the behaviour problem. Depending on the case this might also include medical concerns, which we have identified and emergency plans if external problems arise. A full copy will also be sent to your referring veterinary surgeon to keep them updated on your pet.
– Follow on sessions
These sessions can be booked after your initial consultation has been completed to work through and learn the practical skills to adapt the problem behaviour of your pet.
Once your vet has referred you to Forrest Animal Behaviour, this is the first consultation you will have and will most likely be the first time I meet you and your pet.
This usually takes place in your home, where you and your pet are most comfortable. This means I can meet all family members involved in your pet and the lifestyle your pet has access to. This enables us to provide a tailored behaviour modification plan based around you, your pet and the available lifestyle/expectations. If you would prefer not to have a house visit, online consultations can be arranged.
Prior to the consultation, you will be asked to complete an extensive behaviour history form. It is important that you complete this in as much detail as possible. This will become the starting point of our initial consultation discussion, allowing me to understand all aspects of your pets’ everyday life including the behavioural problem. While awaiting the completion of your history form, we will be assessing your medical history provided by your vet and preparing for your consultation.
This consultation will last between 1.5-2 hours. A large proportion of this time will be spent discussing the problem behaviour, aspects surrounding your pet’s full lifestyle and importantly allowing your pet to settle in my company. This allows us to make a tentative diagnosis of your pet’s behaviour and decide the required approach to resolve the concerns. If appropriate we will also introduce the start of the management of the behaviour or behaviour modification plan.
Following the consultation, you will receive an electronic copy of your behavioural report, detailing our assessment of your pet, how to manage the behaviour concern and the starting plans for the resolution of the behaviour problem. Depending on the case this might also include medical concerns we have identified and emergency plans if external problems arise. A full copy will also be sent to your referring veterinary surgeon to keep them updated with your pet. You will also receive 3 months of phone and email support following the consultation. For dog assessments this also includes one follow-on session to be used within 3 months. For both dogs and cats you can also book additional follow on sessions to practically work through the behaviour modification plan.
Please note there is an additional £50 surcharge for evenings and weekend sessions.
Follow on sessions
Follow on sessions can be booked following your initial consultation for the same behavioural problem.
For canine initial assessments, you will have one follow-on session included to be used with 3 months of your initial assessment.
Follow-on sessions help to work through the behavioural modification plan, providing you with the opportunity to learn the practical skills to manage and adapt the problem behaviour. These sessions are 1 hour long and focus on teaching you the skills to use with your pet. They can be undertaken in the comfort of your home or locations outside the home, depending on the behavioural problem in question.
Below is the charge for additional follow-on sessions:
Please note there is an additional £25 surcharge for evenings and weekend sessions.