ABOUT THE CONSULTATION PROGRAMME
Are struggling to understand your dog’s behaviour? Why your dog howls when left alone? Or why your puppy toilets on your bed instead of the bathroom? Or why your dog growls when you take an item from his mouth? Then we can help you.
At TheShirin Merchant Institute of Dog Training and Behaviour, a hand picked team of behaviourists work closely with Shirin Merchant to provide hands-on guidance on behavioural issues.
Instead of quick fixes, we work with the dog to understand why he is swallowing diapers, attacking other dogs, biting a loving hand or barking when a guest comes over. Once we have the answer, we adopt an approach that uses principles of behavioural science, reward based training, the physiology of the dog, and huge dollops of common sense to work with the dog towards a transformation.
The first step in our programme is to strengthen the bond between you and your dog. All the small adjustments you make in your routine, understanding of a dog’s instincts and translation of doggie language shift your relationship permanently.
This approach has helped thousands of pet owners across India, Sri Lanka, and other countries help their dogs live long, happy lives together.
WHERE WE WORK FROM
Our exclusive programme can be accessed currently in Mumbai in person.
But we also work globally over zoom, whatsapp and phone calls.
Do note we have no authorised centre anywhere in the globe except in Mumbai
WHO WE WORK WITH
We can help with any behaviour or training issue you are facing, including fear, aggression, nervous behaviour, toileting issues and much more.
We work with any pet parent who is willing to put in time and effort to make a change. Whether your dog is a rescue or a fancy pedigree, we draw no boundaries.
It is our belief that every dog that needs help should get it.
HOW IT WORKS
It’s a 3-stage process:
Fill out the Consultation Application form and submit it to us to give us a brief idea of the issues you are facing.
Once we receive the form, we will revert in 48 hours over email with an appointment schedule based on your day and time preferences.
The In person consultation
The consultation is held at our office in Dadar East, Mumbai or online. The first session will last for an hour and a half. You will need to bring your dog for the consult (for in person appointments).
During the session we will first ask questions to get to the root of the behaviour issue, explain the issues to you from your dog’s perspective and then give you a simple programme to work on at home under our supervision. The behaviourist will demonstrate and teach any training required at the session.
Training sessions and supplementary remedies, if needed, are prescribed with either your current trainer or with the behaviourist. Repeat sessions, if required, maybe held every fortnight for a period of 3 months.
Post consultation stage
Between sessions, we maintain a relationship with your over phone, whatsapp, emails and provide support whenever you need it.
A post consultation document summarising the consult will be shared with you including practical guidelines for situations you will encounter with your dog.
Consultations are carried out at our Dadar East, Mumbai office or online via zoom, whatsapp or skype calls.
Any videos of the disruptive behaviours, photographs of bites and list of medications the dog is taking would be helpful in helping us see the whole picture.
Your dog and family members involved in her day to day life.
The first one will typically go on for 1½ hours. Follow-up consults clock in at 45 minutes.
In cash, through UPI or bank transfer.
We wish it were as easy as that. However, behaviour changes take time and unless the pet parent maintains the changes, old behaviour patterns can return; so unfortunately, a ‘cure’ doesn’t really exist for behaviour issues. But with time and effort, we can create new patterns of behaviour, which can take the place of the old ones. The success of a programme depends on a lot of factors, including the duration and intensity of the behaviour, the relationship between the family and the dog, the willingness of the family to work hard to make a lasting change and patience.
As behaviourists we often say a dog’s behaviour is connected to the behaviour of the people the dog lives with. Our behaviour as pet parents can influence our dogs’ behaviour. So changes and effort will be required on the part of the family to see lasting changes in the dog’s behaviour.
We will guide you through the process, but the effort from the pet parent must be there to see a lasting change.
The consultations will include behaviour and training tests. The tests are best done in a neutral environment. In your own home, your dog’s behaviour is influenced by a lot of other factors which get removed in a neutral environment. A neutral environment allows us to see the root causes of the behaviour issues, which we can then work on.
If required, you can take a video of your dog’s behaviour at home to show to the behaviourist.
We do need to speak with you to get details about your dog’s behaviour, so just sending your dog won’t be a helpful session.
Your dog is a living, breathing animal with a brain that is constantly creating new patterns of thought and memories. This is not a car you send in for repair and we replace broken parts with new ones; with an animal, we have to work on creating new patterns of thought – that process has to be given time. Unfortunately, the quick fixes you see on TV shows do not exist in the real world.
Reach out to us, explaining your situation; we are not hard-hearted monsters. We do a lot of gratis work and maybe able to help you.
It is not how we work. We work on the scientific principles of behaviour and creating changes in a dog through those. At no point do we communicate mentally with your dog.
The consultation will be held over a zoom/whatsapp or skype call. Please do ensure you are in a quiet, distraction-free place at the time of the call and can dedicate yourself to the call.
You will be asked to submit information, videos or run some training tests on your dog before the session.
During the session we will first ask questions to get to the root of the behaviour issue, explain the issues to you from your dog’s perspective and then give you a simple programme to work on at home under our supervision. The behaviourist may send you sample videos to watch to help improve your practical handling skills.
Training sessions and supplementary remedies, if needed, are prescribed with either your current trainer or with the behaviourist.
The programmes work in the same manner, just that instead of interacting with Shirin, you will work directly with your designated behaviourist. Shirin has a core team of trained behaviourists and she oversees every programme executed by them.
Shirin will supervise all programmes and training advise given, no matter what programme you sign up for.