Penn Vet launches pet behavior advice app

The University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine is offering pet behavior consultations to general practitioners and their clients through a new web-based app.

The telehealth service allows veterinarians to “integrate a specialized level of care into their individual practices,” Penn Vet reported, and provides expert advice in a field of study that has fewer than 100 board-certified veterinary behaviorists.

“We really want this platform to empower the broader veterinary community and enhance the level of care that they can provide to their own patients,” said KimMi Whitehead, VMD, DACVECC, the CEO of Intellivets, which collaborated with Penn Vet on the app.

The primary veterinarian pays $200 to refer a client.

“Once the owner’s veterinarian has requested a consult through the app and uploaded important medical records, owners are given access to the application’s portal, where they can upload additional information and videos of their animals’ behavior for the specialty consultation,” Penn Vet stated. “From there, the Penn Vet experts can view and assess the behavior using the same rigorous scientific approach that they would apply in an in-person appointment.”

The veterinary school’s behavior clinical team is led by Carlo Siracusa, DVM, MS, Ph.D., DACVB, DECAWBM.

“The beauty of this [platform] is twofold,” said Dr. Siracusa, assistant professor of clinical animal behavior. “First, these videos are capturing actions presented in settings that are comfortable and natural to the animal, so we’re able to get an insightful picture of what could be contributing to the unwanted behavior. Beyond that, the ability to pause, rewind and review the video allows us to effectively dial into specific environmental factors or body language cues that can be used to correct the issue.”

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