It's interesting Ember about your bit about wolves. It also applies to other animals, horses and elephants the "leader" for want of a better word is usually an experienced female who can lead the herd to water and food, The males just fight off competition... oh and mate!!. They pass on their experience to other females they are not dominate but lead from experience.
Gideon\s mom','index.php?page=Thread&postID=192157#post192157 Wrote:I don't like Milan either. A friend, who also doesn't like him, brought to my attention an episode where he was trying to train a lab. The dog clearly told him a ridiculous number of times that the dog was very uncomfortable and was going to bite. It was a very honest dog. It did just exactly what it said it was going to do and nailed Milan pretty good. Milan then stated that the dog bit him without warning. That tells me all I need to know about his dog training abilities.
Admittedly, when I first joined this forum 5 years ago, I was a fan of Cesar Millan. I had only begun watching his show, had seen a few brief episodes, and from all appearances it seemed that he knew what he was doing. He would take a dog with "x" as an issue and, voila! Within an hour the dog was "cured". I think I even expressed a couple of times here that I did like his show, to the dismay (and rightfully so) of some of the forum members.
Fast-forward to a few months later. Izzy had come into my home, and (as many border collies may be) he was extremely sensitive to many things. He was also reactive. Iz and his siblings had been removed from their mom when they were only 2 weeks old (breeder told me that the mom had gotten sick and couldn't take care of the pups). They were set up in a shed with the puppies on one side of a wire barrier and the mother on the other. So for the rest of their time with their mother, the pups could see, hear, and smell their mother, but couldn't interact with her. Not only would that have been extremely frustrating to them, but they missed out on valuable life lessons from her.
At any rate, when I brought Izzy home he was extremely fearful of almost everything, and he had food guarding issues. (Iz is the first dog I've ever had who has had issues with guarding, and he opened my eyes to an awful lot about dog behaviour.) Thankfully I was aware early on, after getting Izzy, that fear is the initial cause of guarding (the dog fears that the food/toy/whatever will be lost, and he/she guards it to keep from losing it)...and the day that I saw the Cesar Millan video that you've mentioned above (as well as some others) I realized that he absolutely does not know what he's doing. You cannot attempt to train a dog to not react by constantly threatening him or her - the result is almost certainly going to be a dog whose fears have been confirmed and heightened. Had he attempted the methods he used on the dog in the video (Holly) on my dog, I would have intervened immediately and told him to leave the property. A dog that resource guards cannot just snap out of it - eliminating the fear with positive reinforcement is time-consuming, but is the best method (imo) - and to threaten a resource guarder by entering their space when they are guarding, and to continue going forward to the dog when they are displaying overtly obvious signs of fear, as Holly did repeatedly, is setting the dog up for disaster. Any good dog behaviourist would have known by Holly's body language that she was highly stressed, and she did warn Cesar several times with her body that she was, but he pushed her, and pushed her, until she had no choice but to retaliate. And yet, he "didn't see that coming". If he did not see the bite coming, then he was not doing what any person who knows dogs would do...he wasn't seeing what she was telling him. And he was pushing her to the point of aggression. That is a HUGE red flag of a person who does not handle dogs well.
There will always be die-hard fans of Millan. I have a close friend from childhood who thinks he's the best thing since sliced bread, and her sister shares the same view. But this man uses flooding and dominance tactics, both of which are not effective when a dog is fearful. The methods he uses, imo, can do far more harm than good, and a dog who has been threatened repeatedly when they are in a fear state can become exponentially worse, to the point where the only viable option, if there is no access to someone who has the time or training to undo all of the harm, is euthanasia.
And that's my mini-rant on Cesear Millan.
"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." ~ Will Rogers
Years ago Peggy took his advice on the give a treat to trade advice. our first dog Sparky the bichon Immediately figured that out, and started bringing Peg stuff for a treat. Lots of stuff.....he would search the house and snatch things to bring her. One day she noticed he kept showing up with small scraps of paper when she tried to ignore him he wiggled the paper till he was barely holding the edge in his lips by the edge. As a lasgt resort he would bump her leg with his nose craning his neck to show her the paper. Wondering where the lil pieces were coming from she followed him looking under the bed she found he had a paper towel and had been tearing small pieces off of it. THANKS Ceaser!! On the bright side though when camping and stopping at rest areas on 2 occasions he brought her money a 1 and a 5. So I guess it wernt all Bad
Izzysmom, one of the things that I thought of as I read your post is that I don't think I have ever watched an episode where Cesar Millan had the owners get a vet exam before treatment. I guess since bullying dogs is his training plan it would never occur to him that a dog's issues could be caused from the dog being ill or in pain.
I'm trying to remember but I thought one of the reasons that Holly's owners wanted help was that they had a baby and were worried about the dog's aggression. I think a dog behaviorist might have discussed re-homing Holly, some problems are best not worked out with a small child in the house.
There was another really horrible episode with a small dog that growled at the family and had bit a few times. CM went with his usual "Pack leader, dog doesn't see you as the leader" and recommended the family not back down the the dog's growls to the point that the daughter (10? years old) stood her ground and had her face only a few inches from the dog while it growled at her. I was horrified, CM didn't seem bothered. I had my daughter (who was 12 at the time) watch the episode with me so I could let her know how dangerous and stupid that was.
Just thought I would share. Last week I had a lady contact me, she wanted to start scent detection. She was extremely concerned about her Doberman joining a class, he was classed as aggressive and dominant. I agreed to meet her and start his training for the first session and see if he could join class.
My heart broke he was such a sweet sensitive dog, that was full of anxiety, he stressed up, needed to keep moving. He had wide pupils, his feet sweat. His face was wrinkled in concern. He had a prong collar and an e collar. I asked her to tiake all the collars off and lets work him off leash. As it is makes it harder for the dog for me to train the person to train the dog, I asked if I could train the odour in as I knew the dog would not handle frustration well and would stress up more and leave. The dog was a dream. The lady watch but appeared a little upset. I asked if she was ok. She said she had never seen him like this with anyone, he was almost puppy like.
I explained this is who your dog is, he is very sensitive and willing and a bit of a goof.
So the picture is this this dog was very stressed. Is reaction to stress was not to stress down ( hide, shake). His was to stress up (move, busy, noisy). You see everyone feels for the stressed down dog but people think the stressed up dog is bad. It is the same thing, I asked her when he acts out imagine he is the quivering dog in the corner, because he is that dog. This dog had been labelled dominant and had some very nasty training on him, which made him more stressed.
The woman cried as she felt so guilty for what she had allowed to happen to her dog. A ignorant Caesar Milan wannabe. Who sees everything as dominance, this could not of been more further from the truth.
I assure her we could work her sweet boy in class, and my only concern would be he would not be able to focus because of the extra pressure of being in a class situation, but my class sizes are small. Her dog was busy, she felt bad and was getting frustrated. I again reminded her and explain to the rest of the people how would you treat the stressed dog hiding under the chair, treat him the same. He did start to settle.
This lady is working through her own feelings at the moment, tremendous guilt, joy as she is seeing her dog for who he is, relief she has found light at the end of the tunne. There is work to be done on his anxiety, and I will help her with that.
This is why I hate ceasar Milan!
Quirky, thanks for sharing that story with such a good explanation. I can understand why the woman is overwhelmed with emotion and I am so happy for her that she has come in contact with someone who knows what they are doing. I just shudder at the thought of the imbecile who has this poor woman using both a prong and e-collar let alone at the same time. That poor dog is an accident waiting to happen if she continues on that mindset and "if" the dog was truely dominant the accident would already have occurred. It angers me that it is the owners who are left with feeling such guilt because they have inadvertently found themselves in the hands of fools.
I know only too well that there are just as many fools out there at not and many come highly accredited and recommended. The well intentioned dog owner who finds themselves needing help can so easily find themselves in the hands of these people.
It is astounding how many people hero worship Cesar Milan. I have a friend in Spain who has been a trainer for over 35 years and runs a dog academy. On her academy FB page she announces with great excitement when his show is returning to TV and advises people to watch it. She calls him her hero, her mentor, her guru. She is not a person that you can even have a friendly debate with on the subject. She is committed to her way on absolutely everything and considers herself the authority on obedience, agility, showing, breeding, diet, EVERYTHING.A closed mind. I find it interesting that such a character is drawn to and committed to dominance theory and tend to think that it is a character flaw in the people themselves that causes them to need to feel powerful and dominant.
What an interesting discussion. I'm no dog training expert but have learned that shouting and 'dominance' doesn't work.
We got Jack from a rescue centre and weren't aware that he'd previously been to agility classes. I took him along believing that he was a complete beginner like myself only to discover that he knew what to do but hated it. I've worked out that a previous owner took him to the same classes but was aggressive in her training methods. Jack is also extremely reactive to doorbells, house callers, loud noises - he runs round and round in collie circles, barking. Initially I tried to deal with this by ' breaking the cycle' with distractive loud noises and tbh shouting. This had no effect what so- ever. He was also a car chaser, aggressive towards small dogs and terrified of the wind!!
Most if not all of these behaviours have gone or are managed through positive behaviour reinforcement, and hours of tummy rubbing, game playing/ mental stimulation and general spoiling.
Hes not perfectly behaved but what a character! I don't think Caesar Milan is so big anymore here in the UK but theres plenty of TV experts to be ignored.
Thanks for sharing your experiences.
Cappy,'index.php?page=Thread&postID=192545#post192545 Wrote:Years ago Peggy took his advice on the give a treat to trade advice. our first dog Sparky the bichon Immediately figured that out, and started bringing Peg stuff for a treat. Lots of stuff.....he would search the house and snatch things to bring her. One day she noticed he kept showing up with small scraps of paper when she tried to ignore him he wiggled the paper till he was barely holding the edge in his lips by the edge. As a lasgt resort he would bump her leg with his nose craning his neck to show her the paper. Wondering where the lil pieces were coming from she followed him looking under the bed she found he had a paper towel and had been tearing small pieces off of it. THANKS Ceaser!! On the bright side though when camping and stopping at rest areas on 2 occasions he brought her money a 1 and a 5. So I guess it wernt all Bad
Oh Cappy, that is a hilarious story, what a smart little cookie. In this instance I think Cesar may have been borrowing R+ methods but that doesn't mean it can't backfire LOL
The same thing happened to me when Max was quite young and I was teaching him to "out" rocks when he picked them up. Training him to "leave it" in the first place was one thing and training him to "out" them when he managed to get one was another. He turned the rocks into currency with which to buy treats. One night when I was eating dinner he was really enjoying the smell of it and I was sending him to "place" while we ate. Suddenly he went outside and came back in with a large rock, dropped it in front of me, sat and waited for his reward, which I am sure he was hoping was a taste of my food. It cracked me up and like yourself I had to rethink the whole "out" and reward thing. At the end of the day he now has a good "out" but it was probably still due to the initial "out" and reward idea that he came to understand and obey the directive.
So glad you enjoyed it we cursed ceasar for the idea and Sparky continued bring stuff for treets till he left us. We were careful not to continue the idea with the other dogs. We take things from them but just give em a friendly pat and a good dog. Jolie is a few days past 5 months old and full blast puppy dispite the many chewys and treats and things to chew on we have bought her she is now fascinated by fire wood logs and banana fronds and such. As long as she doesn't choose anything bad fro her we pretty much let her go its fun to watch.