Behavioral problems can be very common in dogs, cats, and other companion animals. When pet owners look up behavioral issues, such as cats going outside of the litter box, or obsessive grooming in dogs, many websites will tell you to see your veterinarian to rule out any medical problems. How can you tell if your pet’s problem behavior is the result of a medical issue, and if so, what kind of medical issue?
The website VetVine is a great resource for both veterinarians and pet owners. They have created a helpful checklist which outlines common categories of pet behavior problems, and the medical and behavioral causes that could be behind each problem.
Problem behavior categories are: house soiling, excessive grooming, aggression, and excessive vocalization. Possible medical and behavioral causes are listed for each problem. For example, did you know that a cat that goes outside of the litter box could have diabetes? Or a dog that shows signs of aggression could have thyroid disease or epilepsy? Does your pet meow or bark a lot? It could be an indicator of hearing loss.
Check out the VetVine website for the complete list of conditions and causes, and be sure to see your veterinarian for additional help. Interested in exploring more pet wellness topics? The VetVine Hub on YouTube contains dozens of videos for pet owners on all sorts of pet health and behavior issues. You can watch informative videos on everything from pet cancer and obesity to flea and tick control to dealing with pet anxiety, fear, and stress.