What does a Behavioural Consultation involve?
It can differ from dog to dog, but usually involves an initial email or telephone conversation. I will usually ask you to complete a consultation form prior to arranging an initial session (either at your home or a neutral location).
Training packages are often advised following the initial consultation process when the problem is complex, such as separation anxiety or if it involves aggression. Clients usually experience a better and faster success rate with continued contact and training.
The initial session is all about getting to know you and your dog, we can put in place some strategies to manage the behaviour in the short term and put our first phase of training in motion. Further follow up sessions will be used to review progress and assess your changing training needs. This allows us to fine-tune your homework plans from session to session to make sure you are supported at every step of the way.
Does the dog owner have to do all of the training?
No, there are some behaviours that can be trained without the owner being present, it just depends on the behaviour you are looking to address. I offer training sessions with your pet without you needing to be there so that training can progress whilst you are focusing on other things. A handover session will usually be required when the course of training session have been completed in order to demonstrate what you will need to do to maintain the behaviour going forward to avoid regression to previous undesirable behaviour.
Do you offer “Virtual Consultations”?
Yes. Video calls may seem daunting or lacking at first, however they are a great way of scheduling checkups with real-time support and advice just as you would in a face to face visit. During COVID-19 restrictions, video calls are going ahead in place of consultations, which means a continuation in progress in teaching you to train your pets. I can still see you, meet the family, observe your pets and watch and feedback on your training. In some circumstances, virtual sessions can be a more effective way of conducting training. Me being there can be distracting for some pets, or cause others to feel stressed and not act normally. By watching from behind a screen I can see your pet as you do.
Prices for Behavioural Consultations - £75 for the initial consultation and assessment (usually 1½ hours and includes a written treatment plan, additional handouts and training guides), £30 per
subsequent training session (additional charges may apply when an extra handler/dog is required).
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There is always a reason for behaviour, otherwise why do it? With behavioural analysis, we can work together to understand why your dog chooses this behaviour, work out what we might want your dog to do instead and develop a plan to improve your lives together. This could involve something straightforward like a simple change of routine or environment to a structured training plan, it all depends on the individual dog.
My Training Ethos
As a proud member of the Pet Professional Guild in the UK, I am committed to using kind, fair and effective rewards-based methods, based upon up to date research. I do not condone the use of force, intimidation, prong or choke collars, rattle bottles, spray or shock collars, shouting or physical punishment. This does not mean I’ll allow unwanted behaviour, but I’ll teach alternatives or rearrange the dog’s environment rather than using verbal or physical punishment.
What’s the difference between a Behavioural Consultant and a Dog Trainer?
Whilst they are not mutually exclusive, as it is possible to be both a behaviourist and a trainer, it is important to understand that they have very different skill sets. Training a dog to a high level of obedience or to pass a good citizen test is a different set of skills than observing, assessing and understanding the complexities of dog behaviour and developing a plan to change that behaviour. Your dog may be feeling scared, anxious or frustrated, and understanding how to work with and change these emotions is an important part of behavioural work.