Help for dogs

Living with your pets ‘challenging’ behaviour can be disappointing, frustrating, embarrassing, and sometimes scary. Together we can make change and look forward to a calmer, relaxed and happier future. 

We provide friendly and supportive services …to you and your pet. We take a fear free approach to training and behaviour modification and will be with you throughout the journey. We will not use force, fear, intimidation or pain to achieve your goals. Instead, you and your pet can look forward to relaxed and stress free strategies. 

Let’s get started!

First steps consultation: ‘Turning the corner’

At your first steps consultation you and your dog will meet your behaviour consultant. They will be with you going forward to support, guide and teach. They will start by working with you to figure out what’s going on to cause your dog’s undesirable behaviour, and then to set up a customised plan of action. We will take a history, observe your dog’s behaviour and listen to your behaviour training goals.  You will spend time understanding what needs to be done and learning the skills for success. You’ll learn how to communicate effectively with your best friend and put into practice the first steps of the treatment plan.  

As part of your customized plan, your behaviour consultant may recommend a visit with one of our veterinarians. This may occur if you dog is suffering from significant anxiety, if a medical condition or pain is suspected, or if your dog is likely to have a mental health problem.  

Book a 'First steps' consultation

Making it happen consultations: ‘Striding ahead’ 

Making it happen appointments are designed to help you perfect your training and behaviour modification skills and keep things moving in the right direction. They are an opportunity to review progress and make adjustments to the plan. As you and your dog advance, further recommendations may be incorporated. This is an important time to stay connected. Your behaviour consultant will be there to help you through the challenges and celebrate the break throughs. You can schedule single appointments, or purchase a multi-pack of appointments for a discounted price. 

Book a ‘Making it happen’ consultation

Veterinary consultations 

Your behaviour consultant will be able to advise if a veterinary consultation may be helpful for your dog, and generally we recommend a ‘First steps’ consultation with a Behaviour Consultant prior to the veterinary consultation. However, if your regular veterinarian or behavioural trainer suspects an underlying mental health problem then you may choose to begin with a veterinary consultation.  

Our vets will review your dog’s behavioural and medical history, assess response to previous treatments, conduct relevant testing and establish a diagnosis related to the presenting problems.

Medications may be helpful in treating mental health disorders like compulsive behaviour, post traumatic stress disorder, and anxiety disorders. In some conditions medications can significantly improve quality of life and facilitate behavioural change and can also aid in the successful implementation of behaviour modification strategies. Our vet may recommend changes to the behaviour modification plan and prescribe medication or supplements.

After your veterinary consultation you can then work with one of our behavioural consultants, or return to your behavioural trainer, to help you implement the behaviour modification and training component of the treatment plan.  

You have the choice of seeing a Veterinarian – Non Specialist or a Veterinary Specialist in Animal Behaviour. Our Non Specialist Behaviour Veterinarians have post graduate qualifications in, and/or experience, working behaviour cases in cats and dogs. They may also be in training to become a specialist. Their cases are supervised by our Behaviour Specialist. Our Veterinary Specialist in Animal Behaviour has undertaken a 3 year behaviour residency at Purdue University in the USA, completed research, met other academic requirements and passed a rigorous examination process. That puts her near the top of the field. If this is your first behaviour appointment with a veterinarian you might like to see a Non Specialist. If you have already worked with a Veterinarian then the Specialist might be a better choice.

Book a veterinary consultation

House calls

Both behaviour consultant appointments and veterinary consultations are conducted on-site at the RSPCA Burwood East (3 Burwood Hwy, Burwood East). We recommend that all ‘First steps’ consultations for dogs are conducted on-site at the RSPCA. If it is not possible for you and your pet to attend a ‘First steps’ consultation at the RSPCA a house call may be available. House calls can be arranged within a 40-minute travel time of the Burwood East base and will attract an additional travel fee. If there is likely to be significant benefit in assessing and working with your dog in your home, your behaviour consultant or veterinarian will recommend a house call during your on-site ‘First steps’ consultation.  

To book a house call appointment, please email with the subjectline ‘Request for a house call’ and provide…

  1. Your name
  2. Best contact phone number
  3. Type of pet (eg cat, dog etc)
  4. A short description of the behaviour problem(s)
  5. Suburb you live

Video consultations

Video consultations are also available and are offered predominantly for our clients that are unable to travel to our clinic in East Burwood and live outside of our house call radius. For cats, this can also be a good option, reducing the stress associated with travel and clinic environment. If for any other reason you would prefer a video consultation this can be arranged. Whilst we can conduct reasonable assessments and develop good treatment plans this way, obviously hands on support in implementation of behaviour modification is limited with this medium.  We are happy to work alongside approved trainers in your area to help you with the ‘hands on’ parts of the treatment plan. 

When booking your appointment, you will be asked to confirm whether your booking will be as a video consultation. Video consultations will be conducted using Microsoft Teams. Please ensure you have Microsoft Teams app installed. A invitation and link will be sent to you 15 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment time.

Book a video consultation

Packages: Please note that specific ‘packages’ are available for 

  • Ongoing consultations with your behaviour consultant,   
  • Combined Behaviour Consultant and Veterinarian services  

Package options can be discussed at your ‘First Steps’ consultation, with either a behaviour consultant or veterinarian.