Cesar Milan in the UK - March 2010


  • @tanza:

    I totally agree with you Andrea… on all points.. this discussion has been on the forums before... and it got pretty heated... so we all finally had to agree to disagree with his training methods, period

    Agreed Pat! This is a topic that a lot of people are passionate about on both sides. I don't have energy and time to get into an argument about it this time around. Suffice to say, lots of different people have success with different methods.


  • I agree with Andrea. Here's a good article on the topic of training methods if anyone is interested.

    http://www.livescience.com/animals/091112-dog-training.html


  • I haven't watched any of the shows on National Geographic but I see there's 2 sides battling on the web on the training methods. From what I've read he has alpha methods vs the reward method. My first Basenji was easy but my second was quite wild as a pup and I tried the "putting her on the back alpha method". No worky. Also using any alpha methods on my third Basenji with the Napoleon complex didn't work either. They would just get mean. Now my new Basenji, Buddy won't get mean, he would just get real scared and hide. I don't want him scared of me. Establishing a great relationship with them and using positive rewards went much further. I've always wanted to be friends with my dogs and they with me. I'm not a professional dog trainer so what do I know. Just my opinion.


  • @thunderbird8588:

    Thanks for the info Scott, i think he has some good techniques although i realise that not everyone thinks so. Of course you never know how true these programmes on tv are and how much is edited.Most of it certainly looks good
    I have tried to find out if he has ever worked with a Basenji but had no luck

    I agree around the editing part, totally. The biggest issue I have is that these type of shows (regardless of the training method) appear to make it all so easy, that you can with just a day or two magically turn your dog around from a menace to an almost perfect dog. You probably could do more harm than good in some cases with problem dogs if you try to apply certain methods that appear to work so easily on TV, but in reality took a lot more effort. Victoria Stilwell even acknowledges that regarding her show, and I really like her's over Cesar Millan's.


  • @lvoss:

    I agree with Andrea. Here's a good article on the topic of training methods if anyone is interested.

    http://www.livescience.com/animals/091112-dog-training.html

    Thanks for sharing. Good article.


  • @Nemo:

    I agree around the editing part, totally. The biggest issue I have is that these type of shows (regardless of the training method) appear to make it all so easy, that you can with just a day or two magically turn your dog around from a menace to an almost perfect dog. You probably could do more harm than good in some cases with problem dogs if you try to apply certain methods that appear to work so easily on TV, but in reality took a lot more effort. Victoria Stilwell even acknowledges that regarding her show, and I really like her's over Cesar Millan's.

    Me too, Clay. Victoria Stilwell manages to explain how important leadership and structure are for dogs, without manhandling the dog.


  • Just sent email to Cesar Milan on his site now we shall see if get answer. Question have you ever trained Basenji if so when and what was the out come.

    Rita Jean


  • @Rita:

    Just sent email to Cesar Milan on his site now we shall see if get answer. Question have you ever trained Basenji if so when and what was the out come.

    Rita Jean

    IMO, doesn't matter to me if he ever worked with a Basenji or not, it is not the kind of methods that I would care to use….


  • Wow, I really wish I could go to that….

    The trick with Cesar Milan, is to listen to his advise and not his methods. His teachings on staying calm, strong posture, the way a dog thinks and interprets situations is spot on IMO. The advise he comes with between the sessions on the show is the most interesting.
    However people quickly forget that his show is about fixing "problem" dogs, not raising dogs. Like he says in the show, he trains people. If you read his books you quickly realize he is not really all about being strict.

    What is sad, is when people watch his show, and then go right ahead and use his techniques on their dog as a regular method. Which I have seen very often.
    I saw this girl walking her Shih Tzu, and she constantly kicked the dog on the side while walking whenever the dog wanted to move over to the grass (most likely to pee/poo). But this girl was so strict in keeping her dog to "walk nicely" she forgot that it has to be allowed to sniff and do it's business! I got real mad and commented when I passed her "Who do you think you are Cesar Millan?".

    I did talk to a guy on the Cesar Millan forums some 3 years ago, and he had a Basenji. Took a private session with Millan, he said (as they always do) he worked wonders and was not as violent as people think.


  • @NerdyDogOwner:

    Wow, I really wish I could go to that….

    The trick with Cesar Milan, is to listen to his advise and not his methods. His teachings on staying calm, strong posture, the way a dog thinks and interprets situations is spot on IMO. The advise he comes with between the sessions on the show is the most interesting.
    However people quickly forget that his show is about fixing "problem" dogs, not raising dogs. Like he says in the show, he trains people. If you read his books you quickly realize he is not really all about being strict.

    What is sad, is when people watch his show, and then go right ahead and use his techniques on their dog as a regular method. Which I have seen very often.
    I saw this girl walking her Shih Tzu, and she constantly kicked the dog on the side while walking whenever the dog wanted to move over to the grass (most likely to pee/poo). But this girl was so strict in keeping her dog to "walk nicely" she forgot that it has to be allowed to sniff and do it's business! I got real mad and commented when I passed her "Who do you think you are Cesar Millan?".

    I did talk to a guy on the Cesar Millan forums some 3 years ago, and he had a Basenji. Took a private session with Millan, he said (as they always do) he worked wonders and was not as violent as people think.

    I also have read Cesar books and agree here. His show is about working with problem dogs and of course they are all edited. His books do not preach aggression or even striking a dog. We raised our Basenji using many of the techniques he mentions in his books. Those techniques involve staying calm, patient, taking long walks with your dog to bond, and establishing a pack mentality. The Pack order is a very important lesson in Cesar's books.

    Cesar is very smart in the way he communicates that our dogs draw energy from us. If we are nervous our dogs pick it up. If we are angry our dogs pick it up, and when we are calm, our dogs pick it up as well.

    I would suggest that people at least read through Cesar's books before coming to a conclusion on what he is all about.

    One of the most important lessons I think anyone can learn from him is to allow your dog to be a dog.

    Victoria is also a great trainer.

    Jason


  • @ComicDom1:

    Victoria is also a great trainer.

    That's the girl from "It's me or the Dog"? Ugg, I can't stand her. She is full of double standards, and says one thing but does another.

    I saw an episode that made me hate her. She is really a "distant minded" person, and does not care about people at all.

    She was with this family that LOVED their dog. Too much, which naturally caused problems. However once she heard they had bought their dog from a pet store she lost it! Shouted, and was suddenly a VERY big "bitch", "NEVER, buy your dog from a store! It leads to puppy mills! Aahhh!!"
    She went on and on, the family suddenly didn't even look her in the eyes after that. And it's obvious they felt really bad!
    What pissed me off is, she didn't know jack about the store. For all she knew it was a local and private pet-store who only gets there dogs/pets from breeders.

    It's fine she wanted to warn people from buying from stores, but I really think she went overboard. After that I can't stand watching her. I have seen clips, and again she talks as if the owners are not there.


  • @NerdyDogOwner:

    That's the girl from "It's me or the Dog"? Ugg,
    What pissed me off is, she didn't know jack about the store. For all she knew it was a local and private pet-store who only gets there dogs/pets from breeders.

    .

    And this is better in what way? puppies should NEVER be purchased from a store - she goes out of her way to put this across, of course its for TV so its a big dramatic speach, but read the impassioned emails on this forum re buying from a store or a mill and you will see the same exasperation that some people still do this and just perpetuate the problem.


  • That's fine, but she acted like a child. All she had to do was talk in a calm manner and inform them of the horrors of puppymills. Would of been far more effective than shouting and stomping on the ground like an idiot.
    I just find it odd that someone who informs people to stay calm with dogs, yet shouts at people…


  • They each have different methods in approaching people. I would not be able to be in the same room with Ms. Stilwell for very long before wanting to throw her out a window. She's just annoying to me. Mr. Milan talks more low-key with the people, which is something that is easier for me to listen to. However, their core training for the animals is actually pretty close…lots of exercise and letting a dog be a dog. It's the details of their training methods that differ.

    Ms. Stilwell uses a reward method with clickers and treats, associating food with good things. She looks at the whole picture, including diet...something many trainers do not do. Mr. Milan uses a positive/negative reinforcement method, using distraction to stop behavior and affection as the reward rather than food. He also looks at the big picture, but is more focused on how the people interact with their dog.

    It was Ms. Stilwell's method of allowing greyhounds to run that I used on AJ to get him to come back to me when I call him. It is Mr. Milan's techniques that I use for AJ's propensity to be a trouble maker with other dogs. And I do not kick my dog. They both work and neither is violent. AJ is happy, healthy and safe...because he does what I need him to do: Come to me, drop that piece of whatever he found on the ground, get out from under that trailer, head up...to keep him from sniffing that interesting looking puddle of antifreeze.

    I don't agree with everything either of them do, but I don't disagree with everything either. They both have good and effective methods.


  • @NerdyDogOwner:

    What pissed me off is, she didn't know jack about the store. For all she knew it was a local and private pet-store who only gets there dogs/pets from breeders.

    It's fine she wanted to warn people from buying from stores, but I really think she went overboard. After that I can't stand watching her. I have seen clips, and again she talks as if the owners are not there.

    In the US there is no such thing at a pet store that would have puppies from a responsible breeder, period. NO responsible breeder sells puppies to a pet store


  • I did see a show where Cesar Milan was working with a Shiba Inu, who's personality was not unlike our B's. He recognized the difference and did control him - and made reference to the fact that the noise they make is somewhat like the noise Basenjis make, and it doesn't mean they are hurting - it's just the way they talk - I would like to see a show with him handling one of our dogs though - maybe someone in the UK will have one that is especially hard headed - like Shaye.


  • @Rita:

    Just sent email to Cesar Milan on his site now we shall see if get answer. Question have you ever trained Basenji if so when and what was the out come.

    Rita Jean

    If you do get an answer, please post it. We'd all like to know.


  • For anyone looking for good resources on dog communication, I would highly recommend Turid Rugaas's Calming Signals and Sarah Kalnaj's The Language of Dogs. Once you really start understanding dog body language the difference in training methods becomes readily visible in the stress behaviors you begin to observe.

    For those working in rescue Sarah Kalnaj also has a video titled Am I Safe?

    I really like Sarah Kalnaj's videos because they have lots of footage of lots of dogs. Her seminars are also excellent if there is one in your area, I would highly recommend it. I believe she is currently touring with Sophia Yin another excellent animal behaviorist.


  • @tanza:

    In the US there is no such thing at a pet store that would have puppies from a responsible breeder, period. NO responsible breeder sells puppies to a pet store

    Really? So out of the (most likely) thousands of pet-stores in the US not ONE could be run by a kind honest person?
    I can understand staying away from chain/branch stores etc, but private owned is one big mixed bag of people.

    I was visiting Canada (family) some 4 years back, and we went to a private owned store, there the owner even had an approval diploma/certificate from the animal-rights org.
    He sold his own puppies in the store (only if he had any, he never had it as a goal) which were German Shepards (I remember because there was one left, and it was SO cute), also he adopted/helped unwanted puppies/cats etc to sell in the store which he worked together with the local animal shelter in doing, as well having an "I need a home" board were people could hang up ads.


  • In Sacramento, a couple of years ago, there was a news story about one of the "family owned" petstores. It made the news because the police had been called to investigate a foul odor on the property. They found the bodies of over 20 puppies behind the building. They had a parvo outbreak and had just dumped the dead and dying back there.

    About 10 years ago there was a story about another private owned store where the owner sold only dogs she bred. In 3 years she had produced over 20 severely dysplastic Golden Retriever puppies. Even after she was informed of the first diagnosed as having no hip sockets at 6 months old, she continued to breed the parents and sell the puppies.

    So around here the "family owned" or "local store" is far more likely to have substandard conditions than the chain stores.

    The definition of responsible breeder used here in the US includes screening homes, staying in touch with owners to help when there are questions, and willingness to take back the puppy at any time for any reason, these criteria cannot be met by someone who just turns their pups over for sale in a commercial outlet.

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