As a practicing veterinarian, pet behavior is an important topic as it directly affects the relationship my clients have with their canine or feline companion. Often, behavior problems correlate with underlying medical issues. So, getting your veterinarian’s perspective on how ailments (arthritis, urinary tract disease, hypothyroidism, cancer, etc.) potentially are associated with behavior problems is an important component in the process of addressing less-than-desirable behaviors.

Check out my pet-behavior podcast with Embrace Pet Insurance president Laura Bennett See: Addressing Problem Behaviors with Dr. Patrick Mahaney (click link to hear the podcast on the Embrace website). Today’s podcast issue is well, just that…behavioral issues. We’re looking at behavioral modification from both the medical and training angles

Some of the common concerns Dr. Patrick Mahaney and I tackle are:


  1. Separation anxiety: Separation anxiety is frustrating and there’s often no easy fix. What really works? What are the current medication recommendations when training and other behavioral methods don’t work. Are there really more anxious pets or are pet anxiety issues just more often diagnosed than they were 10 years ago?
  2. Litterbox issues: With inappropriate urination and defecation being the leading causes of cats being surrendered to shelters, any special tips or tricks you can recommend to owners struggling with litterbox problems?
  3. Canine inappropriate behaviors: What trends are you finding helpful in the management or correction of inappropriate canine behaviors like excessive barking, chewing, digging, scratching, etc?
  4. Finding a trainer: Do you have any “must-have” recommendations for pet parents that are looking for a trainer or behaviorist? What sorts of professionals do you recommend and who should we avoid? (link mentioned: American College of Veterinary Behaviorists)

Thank you for reading this article.  Your questions and comments are completely welcome (I’ll respond).

Please feel free to communicate with me through Twitter (@PatrickMahaney) and follow my adventures in veterinary medicine by liking Patrick Mahaney: Veterinarian Acupuncture Pain Management for Your Pets on Facebook

Copyright of this article (2014) is owned by Dr Patrick Mahaney, Veterinarian and Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist. Republishing any portion of this article must first be authorized by Dr Patrick Mahaney. Requests for republishing must be approved by Dr Patrick Mahaney and received in written format




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