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Is Your Pet Misbehaving? It Might Have Serious Health Problems

Behavior, By Species, By Topic, Cats, Dogs

Many pet owners struggle with their animal’s behavior: Dogs who chew on furniture, cats urinating outside of the litter box, birds plucking their own feathers; the list is almost endless.

A lot of these behavioral problems are outward signs of deeper health issues. For instance, a dog that chews furniture might need more exercise. The cat that keeps peeing outside its box could have a urinary tract infection. A bird plucking out its feathers may have nutritional deficiencies. Whenever a patient is presented to me with behavioral issues, I start by looking for signs of these underlying issues. If no underlying issue exists, I begin to discuss the best ways to address the negative behaviors that an owner is observing.

Many times, pets with true behavior problems lack stability and/or enrichment in their daily lives. Adding stimulation and routine to a pet’s life is usually a big step towards resolving basic unwanted behaviors. If simple changes are unsuccessful in resolving these issues then I start to consider pharmaceutical options.

Behavior-modifying drugs are an aid to household/environmental changes. Drugs alone will rarely “cure” a behavioral issue.  Instead, they are a tool used to aid in training and/or desensitizing your pet to whatever negative behaviors you are trying to resolve. No matter what type of pet you own, or what kinds of behaviors they display, there is hope out there. Often behavior issues are easier to resolve than many people think. All that is needed is a veterinary consult and some patience.

If your pet is acting up, you can call CEDARCREST Animal Clinic at 540-943-7577 and schedule a consultation.

CEDARCREST Animal Clinic provides medical and surgical care for every stage of your pet's life including preventive wellness care exams and vaccines, spays/neuters, and a variety of specialized care for your dog, cat, avian, or exotic. We are home to the only veterinarian practitioner in Virginia to be double Boarded in Avian and Canine/Feline care and provide care for birds, small mammals, and reptiles of all sorts! Plus, we are home to Virginia's most exclusive dog boarding resort that includes heated floors, an expansive play area, and even webcams so you can watch your pet while you're away. We're located in Fishersville, Virginia, and serve Augusta County and surrounding areas including Waynesboro, Staunton, Harrisonburg, and Charlottesville. 

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