Cesar Millan dog whisperer extraordinaire has a tv show watched by millions and by using different types of psychology and understanding the motivation and behavior of dogs he has become a major player in the world of puppy and dog training…
However, although Millan does have his fans he also has many critics mainly due to some of the dog training methods that he often uses, but more on this later….
Before going into detail regarding some of these dog training methods and techniques lets get to know more about the man behind the myth.
- Cesar Millan was born on 27th August 1969 and actually taught himself how to train dogs.
- Before becoming famous with his TV show he ran The Dog Psychology Center in south Los Angeles from 2002-2008.
- The trainers American TV show has now been broadcast in 80 countries across the world and is in it’s sixth season. Alongside his TV show the dog trainer has written several dog training books and DVDs including the best selling Cesar’s Way.
- The trainer is married to Illusion and they have two sons, Andre born in 1995 and Calvin born in 2001. Andre has a dog called Apollo that has appeared several times in his TV show.
- He learned many of his techniques by watching how dogs behaved on the farms where his Grandfather worked. He learned techniques from his Grandfather who always remained quietly in control using consistency and assertiveness to remain control over the dogs.
- Cesar was brought up by a poor family in Culiacan, Mexico with no TV or many other things that children of today would enjoy. In 2000 he became a legal resident in the US and was granted full citizenship in 2009.
- The trainer was first spotted back in 1994 when he was recommended to the Hollywood actor Will Smith to train the actor’s dogs, and he hasn’t looked back since.
Cesar’s Way – His Dog Training Methods
- Cesar Millan has faced
quite allot of criticism from other dog trainers, vets and other dog
behavior experts because of his dog training methods. Especially his
use of choke collars, electric shock collars and his forceful physical
and mental approach, which can be seen when he uses his ‘alpha
roll’ – this is where he exerts his dominance and pack leader status by forcing the dog onto his
back and then pinning the dog down.
- He has also faced
heavy criticism for his use of hand smacks and hits which he calls ‘hand
nips’. By using this
techniques, other dog trainers and behavior experts feel that it’s
inhumane to cause confusion and fear in a dog that is already stressed.
- The Cesar Millan dog
whisperer TV show and the trainer himself stresses the importance of
dog owners practicing everyday to achieve success when trying to cure
any unwanted dog behavioral problems.
- Millan doesn’t train
dogs and puppies by using basic dog training commands as he aims to
retrain the owners and rehabilitate dogs that are badly behaved.
- Another technique that
the trainer uses and teaches dog owners to use is that they should
always be the pack leader and always show strong leadership skills.
- Alongside strong
leadership skills, dog owners should adopt an assertive stance,
standing tall with chest out as this will strengthen their position as
the alpha male and pack leader, but still remaining calm yet assertive.
- There are
contradictions in Millan’s techniques as one minute he tells owners not
to get physical with their dog and then proceeds to use his ‘alpha
roll’ to exert his dominance. Choke and shock collars have also been
used in some shows which has upset some critics.
- Millan also emphasizes
the importance of walking your dog and giving your pooch lots of
exercise as this will help strengthen your bond and increase your
position as the pack leader. He is often heard repeating his mantra “exercise, discipline and
- The trainer claims
that dogs need “a good job and good
food” with many owners making
the mistake of overdoing the affection and under doing the exercise.
- The trainer makes it
clear that it is up to the owner to exercise their dog and fulfill
their dog’s energy levels as by regular and challenging exercise clear
boundaries and rules are set
- The Cesar Millan dog
whisperer TV show encourages owners to watch and learn from their dog’s
expressions, movements and posture as this will help the owner
anticipate bad behavior problems before they escalate.
- The dog whisperer also
claims that you can say what you like verbally to your dog as it isn’t
what you say but what your dog picks up from within you.
- Throughout the Cesar
Millan dog whisperer TV show the dog trainer uses ‘vocal
marking’ to mimic the way
dogs communicate with each other – you will often hear the dog trainer
tssh noises rather than
words. He won’t use the dog’s name and encourages owners to come up
with their own unique sounds.
- The trainer also
stresses the importance that when you meet a new dog you should let the
dog approach you rather than vice versa – and you should also avoid
making eye contact or even speak – let the dog come to you.
Cesar stresses that dog owners should understand that their dog should
be identified in three levels of hierarchy.
- A dog has canine needs and not human needs.
- Remember breeds are different and have different energy levels. behavioral needs and
- Your dog is also an individual.
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