Behavior Track

Karen Sueda, DVM, Dipl. ACVB and Carly Crowell, RVT

VCA West Los Angeles Animal Hospital

Behavior Wet Lab
Fear-less Leaders: Low-stress handling and training (Japanese Translation)

Carly Crowell, RVT
Karen Sueda, DVM, Dipl. ACVB

In America, veterinary clinics are quickly joining the “Fear-Free” movement to reduce patients’ anxiety and stress during veterinary visits. However, it’s difficult to create positive experiences when dogs and cats are uncooperative and simple tasks such as a physical exam or blood draw turns into a battle. Understanding why dogs and cats put up a fight when we’re trying to help them and how to work with, rather than against, our patients will allow everyone (veterinary staff, patients, and clients) to have a “fear-free”, fun visit. This hands-on wet lab will cover a variety of low-stress handling techniques for dogs and cats for positioning and restraint as well as how to teach basic obedience commands to aid patient examination. Participants will have the opportunity to work with live dogs and practice towel restraint techniques on stuffed (toy) cats.


Methods of Mind Control
Part One: Principles and practical application of behavior-modification
Part Two: Psychopharmaceuticals

Karen Sueda, DVM, Dipl. ACVB

In order to alter a pet’s behavior, we need to understand two things: Why is the pet exhibiting the undesirable behavior? and How do we teach the pet a new, acceptable behavior to perform? Both questions can be answered, in part, by understanding how animals learn. Once we determine the cause of the behavior and understand what motivates the pet to perform it, we can apply the principles of learning theory to treat problematic behaviors or prevent them from occurring. It is essential that veterinarians understand the most common techniques employed by veterinary behaviorists and trainers. Familiarity with behavior modification principles will facilitate communication with behavior professionals, allow comprehension of recommended treatment protocols and aid you in determining whether a treatment protocol is appropriate. In some cases, psychopharmaceuticals may be useful in modifying a pet’s behavior. Like any training aid, medication must be used properly and with careful planning and consideration; otherwise, they can do more harm than good. As medical professionals, veterinarians must understand how behavior medications work, the benefits, risks and limitations of using behavior medications, which cases may benefit from drug intervention and appropriate medication selection.


Cat Fight! Understanding and Treating Intercat Aggression to Create a Harmonious Household (Japanese Translation)

Karen Sueda, DVM, Dipl. ACVB

Approximately half of adoptive household experience intercat aggression when a new cat is introduced and tension between household cats may cause other behavioral problems such as housesoiling. In this lecture we will discuss normal feline social behavior (Should cats live together?), signs of intercat aggression that may be missed by clients, and the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of intercat aggression.


Creating a Happy Vet Experience from Beginning to End (Japanese Translation)

Carly Crowell, RVT

This lecture will help go over how to prepare and manage a dog or cat’s experience with the hospital, from lobby to treatment procedures. We will discuss how to help create a positive experience with each step of the process to help insure future stress free visits for the patients and for the veterinary staff. From the wiggly Labrador to the fearful cat in the back of the carrier, we can better each animal’s understanding of the hospital and procedures. The Lecture will be working in conjunction with the Behavior Lab portion.


Puppy Classes and General Socialization

Carly Crowell, RVT

New puppies are the best part of our jobs as technicians. We even get to see them monthly, but what are memories and experiences are these puppies developing of us during this time? This lecture will go over the crucial steps in puppy development and how we can help mold their first experiences of the veterinary hospital and staff. To help educate owners and create a lasting relationship of trust and understanding with both client and puppy.

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