Management and diagnostic consultations are carried out with a veterinary surgeon as a house visit (within a 100 mile radius of Chester).

A management consultation lasts for 1 hour and is intended for those cases for whom there is a substantial delay before the next available diagnostic consultation or those for whom any wait for a diagnostic appointment is a concern. The aim of the management visit is to assess risk and to put in place management strategies which will minimise risk and prevent escalation of the problematic behaviour.

The diagnostic consultation lasts up to 3 hours for a single pet household and can be longer than this for homes in which there are multiple pets. During this consultation a detailed history is taken and the underlying emotional motivations for the problem behaviour are discussed. The veterinary surgeon then forms an accurate diagnosis of the underlying reason for your pet’s behaviour and devises a practical behaviour modification treatment plan which is tailor made for you and your pet. This initial consultation is theory based and is best attended by all of the members of the household. A summary of the consultation will be provided in written form.

The follow up consultations for our canine patients are generally carried out by members of the rehabilitation team. These are practical sessions and are held in the context of the behaviour problem, for example, at your home, in a field or on the streets. Our rehabilitation and assessment centre at Oak Bank Stables offers a controlled “away from home” environment and includes a series of dog proof paddocks and a mock veterinary consulting room. This facility enables us to limit unexpected exposure to other dogs or people and to set up controlled introductions to problematic stimuli and contexts.

Follow up for cat, rabbit and parrot patients are usually carried out via Skype, Facetime or WhatsApp video call.

The successful treatment of a behaviour problem requires a lot of hard work, time and commitment from all members of the household and so it is crucial that everyone understands this before deciding to go down the behaviour modification route. We therefore strongly recommend that all members of the household attend the management and diagnostic consultations. It is helpful for children to attend but they may not need to present for the entire consultation and therefore it is very helpful if arrangements could be made for a third party responsible adult to be present who can occupy or supervise the children as necessary during the consultation n leaving you able to fully engage with the process.

All clients receive 6 months free telephone or email support and you will be encouraged to keep in regular contact with Behavioural Referrals so that you can maintain motivation when times are difficult and continue to make progress with your pet.