I am a full member of The Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors (APBC), a network of UK behaviour counsellors that are regarded to be at the forefront of companion animal behavioural therapy and that have achieved the highest proven academic and practical standards available. I am also a registered Clinical Animal Behaviourist with the Animal Behaviour and Training Council and hold an Advanced Diploma in Companion Animal Behaviour and Training (COAPE). Whilst training towards my APBC qualification, I spent 15 months working alongside world renowned Pet Behaviourist and author, Sarah Whitehead. I also trained as a ‘Puppy School Tutor’, under another well-known Pet Behaviourist and author – Gwen Bailey. I really enjoy the work that I do as it has enabled me to improve the behaviour and welfare of numerous companion animals and, in some cases, prevented their relinquishment to shelters.
In 2005, I undertook an MSc in Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare at Edinburgh University which provided me with an in-depth knowledge of animal behaviour and welfare including that of: Farm; Laboratory; companion; zoo and wild animals. The welfare of stray and shelter dogs became of particular interest to me after spending three months working for the Thai Society for the Conservation of Wild Animals. The majority of my time at the project was focused on the control and care of the stray dog population, assisting vets with their neutering, vaccination and medical care, plus the day to day running of the shelter. The work also included the feeding and care of a number of wild animals including Asiatic and Sun bears, Gibbons and Macaques.
More recently, I oversaw the behaviour department at the RSPCA (WA) in Western Australia. As Behaviour Supervisor, I was in charge of developing behaviour modification plans for numerous dogs and cats who found themselves at the shelter, which has given me a great deal of experience working with the most ‘needy’ pets as well as the most challenging problem behaviour. Having been at the ‘sharp end’ of when the relationship between pets and owners break down, my passion for preventing behaviour problems before they become established is of great importance to me and why I offer my ‘First Steps’ puppy session.
I am passionate about animals and their welfare, however, I also understand what a difficult time it can be for owners of problematic pets. Hence, I endeavour to improve the situation for both the pets and their owners, usually combining behaviour modification with management techniques, with the aim of eradicating or improving problem behaviour and bringing more calm into the household. I only use positive training methods, so you can be sure your pet will be in safe hands.
MSc in Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare
BSc in Equine Science
Full Member of Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors (APBC)
Registered Clinical Animal Behaviourist (APTC)
Diploma in Companion Animal Behaviour and Training
Dog or Cat Behaviour Consultation £225
If you find you are struggling with some aspect of your pet’s behaviour, you can arrange a behaviour consultation in the comfort of your own home. Types of behaviour problems frequently encountered include:
fearful or worried behaviour
house soiling issues
new baby problems
In an attempt to maintain standards in the industry as well as rule out any potential medical problems which may be contributing to your pet’s behaviour, I only work on referral from your vet.
The consultation usually lasts between 1.5 and 2 hours and it is best if all family members can attend the initial consultation. During the consultation we will discuss in detail the history surrounding the development of your pet’s behaviour as well as discuss and practice methods designed to combat unwanted behaviour. You will also receive an in-depth written report, including relevant handouts and 6 months follow up support, via phone and email. If you require another visit, this can be arranged as a one-off rehab session at a cost of £60.
Check with your insurance to see if you can claim for your consultation, as some providers offer cover for full APBC members.
Please call Sarah on 07539 826 062 to discuss your options.
Please note, there are sadly no ‘magic wands’ with behaviour modification and long-term behaviour change requires time, patience and consistency. It is always best to try and address behaviour problems quickly, as they tend to worsen over time and become more difficult to irradiate.
First Steps Puppy Consultation £100
These sessions are aimed at preventing problem behaviour before it begins, as well as to provide information on all the usual puppy issues. The benefit of having a session in your own home is that they can be tailored specifically to helping your puppy settle smoothly into your household. Plus, these sessions can be conducted prior to them completing their full vaccination program, enabling you to start training early as well as learn about information which is vital for those early puppy weeks. There is a sensitive phase during a puppy’s life, where it is vital to provide appropriate experiences for your puppy in order for them to develop into a well-rounded pet. This starts to taper off at around 12-14 weeks, so it is really important to get started as early as possible. You will also learn basic commands, how to house-train as well as overcome common problems such as ‘mouthing’ using easy, kind and positive techniques that really work.
Which areas are covered?
South Hams, Plymouth, Dartmoor, southern parts of Exeter. If you are outside the South Hams District, there will be an additional charge for mileage at 45p/mile for the extra mileage.
How to make a booking?
It is best to give leave a message on 07539 826 062 so we can discuss your requirements. Due to the nature of the work, your call may not be returned immediately but will be as soon as possible. If you require a behaviour consultation, a referral form for your vet will be provided as well as a questionnaire to fill out.
What are the payment options?
A £50 non-refundable deposit is required to confirm a behaviour consultation. The remainder of the payment will need to be settled at the appointment. Payment methods are limited to: bank transfer, cash or cheque only.
When can I get an appointment?
Booking can be made Monday to Friday. Please note if you wish to book a weekend appointment, there will be a surcharge of £30.
Get in Touch Today
South Hams, Devon.
Telephone: 07539 826 062