Your pet’s behavior can sometimes be a mystery. Why are they barking? Why did they start digging under the fence? The quirky pet habits list is long, and you may wonder why your pet misbehaves. Understanding why your furry companion acts as they do is crucial for their well-being. While many pet owners turn to trainers or behaviorists for guidance, one often overlooked resource is veterinarians. However, initiating a conversation about behavior can be daunting. Our Lytle Veterinary Clinic team provides suggestions on navigating the discussion effectively.

Pet chat: Prepare beforehand

Before your pet’s veterinary appointment, write down details about your furry pal’s behavior. These observations help our Lytle Veterinary Clinic veterinarian understand the context and circumstances contributing to problem behavior. Include the following details in your notes:

  • Behaviors that concern you
  • When the inappropriate behaviors started
  • Triggers or prompting events that induce the behaviors
  • Frequency
  • Duration
  • Environmental changes such as a residential move or the addition of a new pet or person 

Common pet behavior problems

You’d love to believe that your pet always behaves perfectly, but in reality, pets, like people, have their days. Through their behavior, your furry pal expresses how they feel. Whether your pet feels happy and content or unwell and anxious, you can learn to recognize when their behavior changes mean something is amiss. Common pet behavior problems include:

  • Chronic barking
  • Digging
  • Destructive chewing
  • Hiding
  • Jumping on people or other pets
  • Chasing other pets or wildlife
  • Eliminating outside the litter box
  • Biting or hissing
  • Territorial marking
  • Hyperactivity
  • Running away
  • Resource guarding, including food, people, and toys
  • Leash pulling
  • Ignoring following known commands
  • Separation anxiety

Develop a rapport with our veterinarian

Our team is here for you in any situation, not just when your pet is ill or during their annual wellness exam. By establishing consistent veterinary care, you not only ensure your pet’s good health but also build a relationship with us to keep your furry pal at their best. When discussing your pet’s behavior, be open and honest, even if you feel embarrassed. As seasoned professionals, we have heard it all and will not judge. We always listen with concern and compassion.

Ask questions about your pet’s behavior

An open dialogue with our veterinarian is essential, so feel free to ask questions if you need clarification. Understanding the underlying reasons behind your pet’s behavior allows for effective solutions. Seek clarification on treatment options if you’re confused about a particular course of action recommended by our team. 

Pet behavior treatment and follow-through

To determine why your pet’s behavior has changed, our veterinarian examines your four-legged pal to rule out underlying health conditions. If your pet is healthy, we strategize with you on possible behavior modification options. Some pet behavior treatment methods include:

  • Training and socialization, including group training or one-on-one coaching
  • Medications to reduce anxiety
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Environmental changes
  • At-home positive reinforcement techniques
  • Dietary adjustments
  • Pet behavior specialist referrals

Once the plan is set, commit to it. Follow up with us to ensure these tactics are working and talk with us about any changes to your four-legged friend’s behavior, for better or for worse. By following through with the behavior plan and updating us on how your pet’s doing, we can help ensure your four-legged friend is improving.

Initiating a conversation about your pet’s behavior with our veterinarian can lead to valuable insights and solutions. By preparing before your pet’s appointment, approaching the discussion openly and honestly, asking questions, and following through with recommendations, you can work collaboratively with our team to effectively address your pet’s behavior. 

Behavior is complex and as unique as your special furry pal. However, when your pet’s behavior or demeanor changes suddenly, seeking veterinary guidance is imperative. Even the most challenging pet problem can be solved with veterinary behavior solutions. Schedule an appointment for a behavior consultation with our Lytle Veterinary Clinic team.