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Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2014 May;44(3):401-26. doi: 10.1016/j.cvsm.2014.01.009.

Common sense behavior modification: a guide for practitioners.

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Veterinary Behavior Consultations, 11469 Olive Boulevard, #254, St Louis, MO 63141, USA; Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery, University of Missouri, College of Veterinary Medicine, 900 East Campus Drive, Columbia, MO 65211, USA. Electronic address:
Veterinary Behavior Consultations, 11469 Olive Boulevard, #254, St Louis, MO 63141, USA.


Behavior problems are often given as a reason for pet relinquishment to shelters. When presented with any behavior problem, veterinarians should perform a thorough physical examination (including neurologic and orthopedic examination) and a minimum database, including a complete blood cell count, chemistry panel, and total T4 and free T4 by equilibrium dialysis if values are low to rule out any medical contributions. Veterinarians should be a source of information regarding management, safety, and basic behavior modification for common behavior problems. Additionally, various control devices offer pet owners the ability to better manage their pets in difficult situations.


Aggression; Behavior modification; Control devices; Management; Positive reinforcement

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