Behaviour Consultations

Dr Leah is now on maternity leave.

Dr Leah is a senior veterinarian and has a particular interest and Qualification in Veterinary Behavioural Medicine. Dr Leah Barth has studied behaviour in animals and provides her services in clinic or can do home visit's for her patients. She treats aggression, anxiety, barking and everything in between.

For Pet Owners :

We offer 1hr in clinic behaviour consultations, with our behaviour vet. Dr Leah has attained a post-graduate qualification called a membership in veterinary behaviour and attends seminars and conferences to keep her knowledge in this field up to date.

The behaviour consultation includes:

  • Pre-consultation behaviour questionnaire, which is read by Dr Leah before the consultation and helps to clarify the problem, secondary problems and your goals and expectations.
  • Veterinary clinical examination if required.
  • Behavioural diagnosis.
  • A verbal explanation of the diagnosis and how to confirm it (this may require video recording or other further steps).
  • Discussion of the treatment plan which may include changes to the home and yard and routines that you follow daily with your pet, behaviour modification, pheromones (Adaptil or Feliway) and/or prescription medications.
  • A written report (usually provided within 14 days of the consultation) of the above discussion for you to refer to.
  • All cases requiring medication will receive follow up support by phone during the first two months of treatment, most of these cases require many months of treatment to prevent relapses. Many of the medications should not be stopped suddenly, and, if and when we do stop them, the dose needs to be gradually reduced.

What else might be needed:

  • Most cases require follow up visits to review progress, and adjust behaviour modification and medication. The first follow up visit is often required 6-8 weeks later.

  • Medication costs and the costs of blood testing to ensure that your pet does not have any underlying conditions that negatively affect how the body responds to long-term medication are in addition to the behaviour consultation.

 

Other information to share in order to prepare the client :

  • We use only reward-based behaviour modification and management solutions. We will not recommend any solution that involves scaring or hurting your pet as this could compromise his or her welfare. You may have to adjust your expectations for what your pet can actually achieve and be patient. Improvement takes time, especially if we are trying to change a behaviour that has been repeated for many months or years. Not all pets are capable of achieving what we might consider ideal behaviour but we can negotiate a compromise.

  • Dr Leah works part-time. Please be patient and let us know how best to contact you, we use the phone a lot, and email too.

  • Sometimes we can see your pet by home visit in the local area. This is more expensive because of the time and travel involved. You should expect to wait at least 2 weeks before a home-visit. If a serious behaviour change has occurred, it is wise to have a consultation in clinic as immediate intervention can lead to more rapid improvement.

  • Severe cases, or cases that are not local and must be seen at home may need to see a referral behaviour vet, such as Dr Cam Day who provides telephone consultations and also visits the Sunshine Coast several times a year, or get help via a telephone consultation with a behaviour specialist vet in Sydney or Melbourne.

  • Dr Leah is a behaviour vet. She is not a specialist (vets must manage many hundreds of difficult cases and pass very stringent exams to earn this title and they deserve it!). Dr Leah can help with many of your pets behaviour challenges.

  • Many situations can be improved by an experienced dog trainer who uses fun and reward-based techniques. But remember trainers who call themselves specialists or behaviourists do not have to meet any training or legal requirements to use this word (vets do). Make sure you ask trainers what techniques they like to use. Techniques that rely on scaring or hurting your pet may lead to serious complications and a lack of trust in the relationship you have with your pet. Once you lose it, it can be very hard to get that trust back.

  • For existing clients - Please contact the clinic and inform us that you are interested. We will send you the behaviour questionnaire to complete and return. Dr Leah will then review this, and someone will contact you within about 2 weeks, to possibly book an appointment.

  • For New clients – Please contact the clinic, register as a clientand inform us that you are interested. We will send you the behaviour questionnaire to complete and return. Dr Leah will then review this, and someone will contact you within about 2 weeks, to possibly book an appointment.

For referring Veterinarians :

Follow the link below, to find out about Dr Leah Barth's qualification  - https://www.anzcvs.org.au/chapters/veterinary+behaviour+chapter

Who are we?

The Veterinarians of the ANZCVS Veterinary Behaviour Chapter are those with a specific interest and high level of expertise in the field of animal behaviour. We are involved in all facets of animal behaviour, from research and investigation, to practical applications in management of behaviour in domestic and wild species. We give advice about animal behaviour to media, dog trainers, veterinarians, veterinary nurses, zoos and wildlife parks, welfare groups, universities and other interested groups. We are the first port of call for owners of pets who have issues such as anxiety, reactivity, and aggression. Our veterinarians treat cases of house soiling, noise phobias, separation anxiety, tail chasing, excessive barking, feather plucking, cribbing, flank sucking, pacing, dementia and more. The majority of these problems are not simple training or obedience problems, but have an underlying medical basis. Our veterinarians are skilled at diagnosing the underlying cause of a behaviour and developing a treatment plan, which may involve appropriate medication (if indicated), environmental management and behavioural modification.

Please scroll down to the register below to contact a behaviour veterinarian near you.

Mission:

  • To advance the understanding and application of animal behaviour principles. This is both a science and an art.

The Veterinary Behaviour Chapter aims to foster the interest of veterinarians in the understanding of animal behaviour. This aim is met by working within the College to provide an examination process that allows recognition of further study in the field of animal behaviour.

The Chapter:

  • Actively seeks mentors for candidates and supports the formation of mentor groups to provide support and guidance for prospective members.

  • Prepares examinations and organises examiners for Membership candidates. Provides a means of accreditation for veterinarians interested in animal behaviour.

  • Provides a means by which veterinarians can show that they have the skills, knowledge and attitude to be deemed competent in this field.

  • Produces regular newsletters to disseminate relevant information to members and other interested parties.

  • Encourages and provides support for members in preparation of material for publication or presentation.

  • Provides a forum for presentation of material to peers at regular scientific meetings.

  • Facilitates the exchange of knowledge between veterinarians interested in animal behaviour and animal welfare.

  • Provides an advice service to media, dog trainers, veterinarians, veterinary nurses, universities and other interested groups.

  • Encourages exchange of knowledge with and collaborative work with other groups involved in animal behaviour and animal welfare.

  • Encourages further investigation in the area of animal behaviour using scientific research methods to further knowledge in this field.

  • To increase the profile of animal behaviour as part of veterinary medicine.

  • Aims to acquire, maintain, employ and dispose of such real and personal property and to organise such services as will further the above aims.

In addition the Chapter is responsible for the organisation of Fellowship examinations. Success at these rigorous examinations allows eligibility for specialist registration.