What to expect
The initial consultation visit will take at least 1.5 hours and will be carried out at your home, with you, your pet, and as many members of the family present as possible. I will ask you lots of questions, not just about your pet’s problem behaviour but also on their veterinary history and general background, such as what, where and when they eat and sleep, how much exercise they get per day etc. From this information I will make a preliminary diagnosis and begin to discuss ways we can potentially solve the problem, using only kind methods based on praise, rewards, trust, and communication between you and your pet.
Approximately 10 days after the initial consultation I will send you, and the referring veterinary surgeon, a report with a more complete diagnosis, and a step by step programme for you to work through with your pet.
I aim to ensure that the cause of the behaviour problem is addressed rather than just the symptoms – so that the end result will be a happier pet, a more confident owner, and a more harmonious relationship between the two. This also ensures the problem is less likely to reoccur or for other behaviour problems to emerge.
It is important to remember however, that your dog/cat cannot be given a pill to make them instantly well behaved. Changes in behaviour will typically take time – the problem may have developed over many months/years and inadvertently been reinforced. You will need dedication to stick with the programme, and daily work to make progress – but I will support you.
All behaviour problems need an in-depth consultation to establish an accurate diagnosis, determine motivation and discuss the appropriate treatment programme in detail. This means that I am unable to answer questions about individual problems over the phone or on email.
How to make an appointment
Clients are only seen on veterinary referral to ensure that there is no medical cause for the underlying behavioural problem. So first take your pet to your veterinary surgeon for a check up. Explain that you are experiencing behavioural problems and would like an appointment with Penaran Higgs, pet behaviourist, giving them the contact details of my PA Jayne Higgins (07471 821 696) or they can get in touch via the contact page.
Please note that payment in full is required before the initial consultation (via the payments page). The consultation will last at least 1.5 hours, with subsequent follow-up calls arranged as required.