A Shepherd mix might benefit from a dog behaviorist

(Photo credit: Catherine Falls Commercial / Getty Images)

It can be hard to know what to do when dealing with complicated behavior issues. If you or your dog are struggling, you may benefit from the help of a dog behaviorist. These professionals are trained to help with complex issues, including canine aggression and anxiety. Here’s more info about dog behaviorists, and how one can help your pup.

What is a dog behaviorist?

A dog behaviorist is a trained specialist. They undergo more specific training than dog trainers, often with a certifying body such as the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. This requires extra education, internships, and qualifications. Behaviorists can also be veterinary behaviorists. This is a board-certified veterinary specialty that requires a degree in veterinary medicine as well as several years of specific behavior training.


While there is a lot of overlap between a dog trainer and a behaviorist, they have some key differences. Dog trainers work on general obedience and training. Behaviorists work with individual dogs on serious issues. They may work with dogs experiencing trauma, fear, or aggression. A behaviorist can also work on problems such as separation anxiety or destructive chewing. Veterinary behaviorists can also diagnose health issues and prescribe medications to treat behavior issues.

How a behaviorist works

A behaviorist will do several things when working with a dog. The first is the initial consultation and evaluation. The behaviorist can complete the evaluation at your home or their office. The initial consultation gives the behaviorist a chance to observe problems, assess their cause, and answer any questions. They can then tailor a plan for your dog’s needs once your dog has been evaluated.

From there, training will begin. A behaviorist will employ a variety of methods, including home visits, behavior modification techniques, handouts, and education. Some methods include desensitization, such as BAT, for fearful or undersocialized dogs. Other methods, such as counter-conditioning, replace unwanted behaviors with positive ones. Positive reinforcement training encourages good behaviors. They will also help train you to observe, understand, and work on positive training techniques on your own.

Benefits of working with a behaviorist

There are many benefits to working with a behaviorist. The biggest, and most important, is resolving the problem. By understanding and addressing your dog’s needs, you can reduce stress for you and your dog. And, by knowing what to do when your dog has an issue, you can prevent further problems in the future. 

Working with a behaviorist can also increase your dog’s quality of life, especially for fearful or anxious pets. If your dog is less stressed, you can spend more time together enjoying activities. It’s also important for the safety of you, your dog, and others, especially in the case of aggression. By working to reduce and redirect these behaviors, you can help prevent a potentially dangerous situation — and possible euthanasia.

Now that you know what a dog behaviorist is, learn about how they can help with separation anxiety. And, if you want to know more about dog training, check out the most popular dog training methods.

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

Summer Allergies in Pets: How to Spot the Symptoms!
The Public Can Help Name a Baby Western Lowland Gorilla at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute
Chester Zoo Celebrates The Arrival Of A Sulawesi Crested Macaque Baby
Cat In Cat Backpack #shorts
How Do Your Dog’s Hormones Affect Their Health and Behavior?

Leave a Reply