Conducting Virtual Behavior Consultations
|January 6, 2019
3 week online course
About the Course
Overview: As animal behavior consultants, we know all too well how hard it is to keep a client seeing a behavior
problem treatment though to its successful end. Life gets in the way, schedules are filled, money runs out, patience
is lost, and so on and so on. Often, the owners who need us most are those who can afford us least or those who are not
near us. Add to that the fact that, like a significant other… or great shoes…a good behavior consultant is hard to find.
Are you a behavior consultant who has successfully resolved a variety of behavior cases and are you looking to expand
your business? Are you new to the industry and looking for ways to get your name out there? This course will teach any
behavior consultant the ins and outs of offering virtual behavior consultations. Learn how to do it as well as when (and
when not!) to do it.
Class schedule: The class will run for three weeks total.
- Effective and skilled in marker training, shaping, and capturing.
- Effective in interpersonal communication.
- Basic computer abilities (email, IMing, Skype, word processing, etc.)
Required Course Materials:
- Internet access
- Facebook account
- Skype account
- Ability to record audio and video of your own computer
- At least two pets available for Skype consultations!
Week 1: Setting clients up with technology
Summary: This week, students will learn how to make the remote consultation experience as smooth and as enjoyable
as possible for clients. As you already know, the first step in gaining a new client is setting up the initial consult.
The harder step is securing the follow-up. Clients are often already upset or frustrated – that's why they came to us
to begin with. Is critical that we avoid developing frustration in association with us too! Consultants must be prepared
to instruct, support, and troubleshoot clients throughout the experience, but more importantly, ensure the remote consult
yields informative, useable content. This week students will learn how to connect with clients via Skype and at least
one other format, ensure clients have clear and concise instructions, and ensure the remote connection is a quality
- Find a classmate partner to test/practice your online live video chat account with
- Set up session to discuss and test various factors, considerations, settings, etc.
- Develop a checklist of the factors you think you will need to consider when working with your new client (Your video/camera
quality, client video/camera quality, lighting, field of frame, your connection, client connection, etc.)
- Submit for feedback from fellow students via Facebook discussion group
- Modify as needed and turn it into a client handout on how to use online live video chat for remote consultations.
- Submit for review the final draft of client handout on using online live video chat for remote consultation
Week 2: The consult
Summary: This week, students will learn how to navigate a remote consultation. When it comes to performing behavior
consults, we all know that what the client thinks is going on is not always what is actually going on! We cannot rely
on the interpretation of others of a pet's behavior – we must rely on ourselves as the professionals. Further, handling
difficult clients, ending on time, and gathering the necessary information are critical to successful remote consultations.
Like with many things, practice makes perfect. This week, students will participate conducting online live video chat
consultations, playing the role of both consultant and client.
- Each student will:
- Find a partner in the class to roll play a consult with
- "Client" will present a problem behavior to their partner "consultant" (behavior problem can be made up, based on own
pet, based on client, etc.)
- "Consultant" will work with "client" determine what is going on.
- Problem behavior should be fairly basic and straight forward.
- Complete the provided self-assessment and partner-assessment forms.
- Submit client history and assessment forms to course instructor.
- Consults should be recorded if possible.
Week 3: Identifying services
Summary: Like with any tool, remote consultations have their limitations and benefits. This week students will assess
those merits and limits of using online live video chat, email, and phone as behavior consulting tools. Depending on
your skillset and experience, some of you may find certain behaviors better suited to certain mediums. It is important
for a consultant to have a variety of tools in their toolbox, but also know when – and when not – to apply those tools.
This week, students will determine when (or if!!) they can use remote consultation services, and when they should not.
- Each student will create a spreadsheet, list, or table of the behavior problems they currently work with. They will
indicate which behaviors in the list 1) may be addressed via online live video chat, 2) may not be addressed via online
live video chat, and 3) may only be addressed via Online live video chat when certain criteria are in place. Justification
is to be provided for each (ex: Why can this behavior not be addressed via online live video chat?)
- Students will contact their insurance policy carriers to review the list and determine if liability concerns impact
addressing behavior consultations via online live video chat.
- Students will discuss their thoughts with fellow classmates, revise their document as needed, and submit a final draft
Full Course (Assignments and participation required – receive certificate of completion and CEUs) - $255 for non-members, $199 for IAABC and KPA
Audit (No CEUs and certificate and no requirements) - $100 for non-members and $50 for members
IAABC Members – log into your member account for the discount codes to use
CEUs: 8 for IAABC and KPA, CCPDT Pending
Technical Support: If you have any issues with signing up on the learning system website, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and please provide a detailed description of the error that you are experiencing, as well as what browser you are using, the version (if known) and if you are using a PC or Mac computer.
About the Presenter
Through her business Jones Animal Behavior, Katenna Jones provides private dog and cat behavior consulting services,
group classes, and seminars at both local and national events. Katenna is the former Director of Educational Programs
for the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, Animal Behaviorist for the American Humane Association, and Behaviorist
and Investigator for the RISPCA. She has been involved in animal sheltering and rescue since 2000, is a disaster responder,
is author of Fetching the Perfect Dog Trainer: Getting the Best for You and Your Dog and has contributed to numerous
local and national publications. Katenna earned her Master's from Brown University where she studied animal behavior,
learning and cognition. She is an Associate Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist, Certified Cat and Dog Behavior Consultant,
and Certified Pet Dog Trainer. She shares her RI home with her husband, two adopted cats, and adopted dog.