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Is Your Pet Behaving Badly?

Is Your Pet Behaving Badly?

Living with behavioral problems can be stressful for everybody involved. Dealing with behavior issues takes patience, sometimes requires visits to professionals, and always involves time and effort working with the animals at home. There’s no easy solution, no simple pill that will take care of the problem completely. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed as you go through the healing process with your pet, don’t be too hard on yourself. Rest assured that others have had to deal with the same experience, and they understand what your household is going through.

Getting to the underlying cause of your animal companion’s behavior issue requires looking at the whole picture — life before he came to you, health problems such as chronic pain, the environment you live in, and the connection he has with you. The state of your body, mind and spirit can and does affect your animal’s well being. Using therapies that treat more than just the behavioral signs (in the animal) or symptoms (in people) is very important. Approaching disorders as part of a larger picture is the definition of holistic, and combining the holistic approach with conventional medicine is called integrative medicine.

I believe an integrative approach is essential for behavior disorders. Many types of complementary therapies are available for humans as well as animals, such as calming music, aromatherapy, herbs, massage and energy therapies. One of the most important things you can do to help your animal’s behavior challenge is to be aware of the dynamic between the two of you. As I have come to understand the energetic aspects of the human-animal bond, I see that animals instinctively mirror who we are. If you have a dog with separation anxiety, what anxiety issue have you not healed? For those of you with aggressive animals, please have the courage to look at where the human anger is lurking. Is it between people in the household, or perhaps anger from childhood?

One of the best spiritual gifts our animal companions give us is knowledge about ourselves. If our unresolved issue is being reflected back to us by our pet, then it is something that is affecting our lives. We may not be able to see it right now, but with time, this unresolved problem can manifest into illness or other dis-ease. Along with helping them through the behavior problem, we can honor our animal companions by taking care of ourselves. In doing so, we make their healing so much easier.

Adapted from Through A Dog’s Ear: Using Sound to Improve the Health & Behavior of Your Canine Companion, Sounds True Publishing 2008

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Susan Wagner

Dr. Susan Wagner is a board certified veterinary neurologist whose pioneering work acknowledges the bioenergetic interaction between people and animals. She is an advocate for change in the area of interpersonal violence and animal cruelty, and works toward a greater understanding surrounding the health implications of the human-animal bond. Dr. Wagner is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University Veterinary College, a Level IV Healing Touch for Animals practitioner and co-author of Through A Dog’s Ear.


+ add your own
2:20AM PDT on May 1, 2013

I think, basically pets need TLC, "A lot of tender, too much love, and an a massive doses of care..."
Many of them has been treated like hell on earth and they don't have words to explain, to share with us...their behaviours sometimes explains or demonstrate what happened to them ...
My sacred secret... lot of exercise, they love share walks wherever I go, sea, mountains or just to pick up the mail...10 minutes...? great, more than 1 hour that's the BEST!

2:59AM PDT on Apr 30, 2013

lots of exercice and rules.Love :-) it Works :-)

12:13PM PDT on Jul 23, 2012

I agree with Alexandra O.
It 's important to know about your dog's past,before you torture yourself
thinking it's your fault or someone in your family's fault if dog is acting
in some strange way.
I rescued a 7 month old dog,
who was kept in a cage, beaten and unloved for at least 5 out of
those 7 months. He was passive and scared. If you made any sudden
noises he would jump out of his skin.After working with him,he is
pretty much cured. He's 6 years old now. He's a good boy.
I have worked with animals my whole life,both wild and domestic.
you can usually tell if a animal is afraid. Researching your pets'
history if you don't know it will help you alot. Blaming yourself
especially if you are innocent will hurt alot. Unless you know your
pet is reacting to you,or someone else. But there's all kinds of things
that can cause disturbstances in your pets' life.Envoirnmental,food,
illness,neighbors,alarm clocks,doorbells,loniness,explore all possibilities
before blaming yourself.Thats a terrible thing to do, to blame.some
It's like blaming the mother for the child's behavior.

2:22PM PDT on Apr 12, 2011

Yes, I have a pug that bites my pants and a I have a long haired cat that keeps beating the crap out of me. I am waiting for his liver flavored prozac from my vet.

7:52PM PDT on Apr 7, 2011

This is funny in some ways how animals misbehave. Love the article picture. If we leave our shoes out for them to tear up, it's our fault damage has been done by not our shoes up. Animals usually do this when the want attention when ignored or is the single pet and no one to play with.

7:10AM PDT on May 18, 2010


11:33AM PDT on May 7, 2010

animals are innocent no matter what

4:31AM PST on Jan 29, 2010


3:39AM PST on Jan 23, 2010

Such a lot of helpful hints, Calming music, aroma therapy,human- animal bond, herbs, massage, separation anxiety, toxic chemicals. Now I think I know how to cop with a misbehaving pet.Thank you .

8:40PM PDT on Sep 23, 2009

having a bad time with your pet? I recommend you check out this link that I found while searching for a video about pets..
it's really cute..:)

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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