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Cesar Millan: Dog Whisperer Archives

August 17, 2008

The Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan

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...photo from National Geographic website


I've been watching this National Geographic program for over a year and it truly is an amazing show. It's not just a pet show or a dog trainer program. The Dog Whisperer is light years ahead of anything else that I've seen, for people with what they think are 'problem dogs.'

Problem owners is more like it. I'm not being judgmental, I'm just stating a fact. Dogs live in a hierarchical system. The top dog is the leader of the pack and takes charge of the rest of the dogs in that pack. A pack can consist of dogs, or dogs and their human owners. If the owners don't take control of the pack, then the dog will take over.

Mother Nature abhors a vacuum. If one is created by a weak, fearful or insecure owner not stepping up into a leadership role, then Mother Nature takes over and the dog steps up, because the humans aren't doing it.

Cesar Millan understands this backwards and forwards. He teaches dog owners the same lesson over and over again, day after day. I don't know how he has the patience to repeat himself day after day, advising dog owners to change their energy to give off a calm and assertive energy to tell the dog that the owner is in charge and so, the dog can relax.

Cesar gives the same information and the same direction to each dog owner...stand up, take control of the situation and be your dog's pack leader. Simple, you think? I think so!

But, on this program, it's never simple.
Well, the lesson that Cesar teaches is simple, but the owners getting what he's teaching is often complicated by their inability to comprehend the concept of energy that they are projecting towards the dog.

If you haven't seen the show, take a few minutes and find it on the National Geographic channel and watch a few episodes. It's pretty cool stuff!

" I rehabilitate dogs, I train people." ~ Cesar Millan

October 18, 2008

Cesar Millan: Dog Whisperer

Cesar Millan is effectively changing the lives of humans and dogs, one dog at a time.
His program, The Dog Whisperer, is on National Geographic channel and it is a remarkable slice of life. It's not simply an 'improve your dog's behaviour' program, teaching dogs how to behave so humans will approve. Rather, Cesar's show is totally about teaching humans to step up to the plate, changing their own behaviour, then making a shift in their own energy levels and thereby changing their lives, making better the lives of their dogs and themselves.

Ernesto Robles and his wife and children were the subject of the show this afternoon. Ernesto has a life-long fear of dogs, known as cynophobia, that was brought on by a fierce attack by a neighbour's dog when Ernesto was a small child. He was outside playing with his friends in their neighbourhood in Mexico. One of the dogs in the area began barking furiously and then raced towards the little boys. They ran for their lives towards Ernesto's home. The other boys made it to the house, ran inside and slammed the door shut, leaving a terrified little Ernesto standing just outside of safety, to face the enraged dog alone.

The little boy only remembers closing his eyes and screaming and screaming, then waking up in the hospital with doctors giving him rabies shots in his stomach. This so terrorized him that he has lived ever since with a paralyzing fear of dogs.

Today, he's a grown man, with a beautiful wife and four handsome sons...16 year old twins and 2 younger sons, 6 and 4 years old. His 6 year old son desperately wants a dog and has been asking his father over and over again for a dog for their home. Because of Ernesto's terror, he has so far refused to allow a dog into his family's life.

Ernesto and Cesar got together to talk about this fear and to work towards doing something about it.
One of the steps that they took together happened when Cesar invited Ernesto and his family to meet him at his Dog Psychology Center in Los Angeles. As Ernesto's wife and sons moved into the outer area of the fenced compound, Cesar invited Ernesto to walk into the center of the area within the fenced yard where Cesar's pack of approximately 40 well-balanced calm dogs were waiting. With great resolve, Ernesto opened the gate, walked inside the area and, at Cesar's instructions, walked forward without looking at any of the dogs in the area.

I was amazed to see how respectfully the dogs treated him as he walked among them. For the most part, only a few approached him, wanting merely to smell him and get acquainted. He did well, considering his deep-seated and all-encompassing fear. It was obvious to me watching Ernesto's body language that he was more than a little nervous. He went ahead anyway, and within a short time, I noticed that he visibly relaxed...but only a little.

After some time of Cesar's supervision, quiet instruction and advice, and with one on one contact between Ernesto and those quiet calm dogs, it became clear that he was breaking through to that small terrified boy from long ago. There was no magic A-HA! moment for Ernesto during this show. There were, however, many small moments of knowing for him, as he experienced the blessing of calm and peaceful dogs. His tears washed away the pain and fear from that long ago day.

Next, a visit to a humane society gave Ernesto even more confidence in sorting through the many kinds of dog behaviours...learning the difference between dogs that are trustworthy non-threatening canines and dogs that are aggressive. Cesar patiently walked with him every step of the way, and it became clear that Ernesto really got it that his childhood memories were running his life and today's memories are the only ones that he needs to play over in his mind...the only story he needs to tell himself.

In the end, Louis, a Chinese Crested from Cesar's own pack, was brought into the Robles' home to strengthen Ernesto's developing trust with dogs. Louis bonded with one of Ernesto's sons almost immediately. Cesar made the decision to offer Louis to the Robles family as a perfect match for a family pet. The family talked it over and decided to accept his kind offer, and Cesar delivered his buddy, Louis, to the Robles family home at the end of the program.

By this point in the show, needless to say I've been reduced to tears more than a few times. It's remarkable to find a program on TV today that consistently touches my heart and, every time I watch it, teaches me new ways of relating to other people.
Cesar's show does this.

I think his program would make a great parenting show for people wondering how to maintain discipline in their family and how to set healthy boundaries within their home for their children.
Indulged children are unhappy children.

Just as an indulged dog creates chaos in the home where he lives, indulged children also create chaos in a vain attempt to push the envelope, hoping that someone adult-sized in their family will take the lead and run the show. This gives both children and dogs a feeling of safety and security.
It's very scary for a small child or a dog to be in charge of the situation. They don't know how to do it, they know they don't know what to do, but if no one else steps up and takes control, then the child or the dog will do it, because Mother Nature abhors a vacuum. That's Mother Nature's way of filling the void left behind when no one is taking control.

At the end of the program, I'm left with a profound sense of joy at seeing this tall, strong man return to the feelings of that little boy's panic and fear, then walk through his own process and come out of the shadows into the sunlight at the end of the day, quite able to sit with several dogs without fear.

I'm also left with a deep respect for a man like Cesar Millan, who takes the time and has the goodness of heart to help a person shed those deeply-rooted layers of fear, in order to become at ease with the warm and friendly ways of Cesar's own dogs.
Beautiful.

“We have to use exercise, discipline and affection every day.
Most of the time people share affection, affection, affection, and that creates frustration.
In a powerful breed, that's going to lead him into aggression.
So exercise and discipline play a big role in balance.” ~ Cesar Millan

November 11, 2008

Cesar Millan's Cesarism #1...

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"I love it...a pit bull and a bull terrier working together, proving that we can both live in this world without killing each other." ~ Cesar Millan


Cesar has an exceptional show on National Geographic channel.
He's incredibly gifted when it comes to understanding the nature of dogs, and delightfully, the nature of people. His show runs every day of the week in my area, and I watch it whenever I can.
The weird thing?
I don't have a dog.

That doesn't matter.
I learn so much about my corner of the world and the people in it from the interactions I see between Cesar, the dogs and their humans.

I love Cesar's complete honesty and directness when he's helping the humans understand what they need to do to project a healthier energy for their dogs' well-being. He calls a spade a spade...no mollycoddling, no beating around the bush, just plain old garden-variety common sense.

Cesar also works in a holistic manner with dogs who have been traumatized. I've watched in amazement as he takes a troubled dog for an acupuncture session. Within moments of the acupuncture treatment beginning, this frantic and fearful dog relaxes, closes his eyes and appears to meditate. Simply stunning to watch.

This guy is totally open to all forms of holistic healing. Massage, swimming, relaxation in the water and homeopathic treatments all work as well for dogs as they do for humans. Cesar is completely receptive to using whatever works to bring the dog into a balanced state. Further to that, he's more than willing to educate the humans living with that dog, so they can continue the process of keeping their dog in complete balance after the show is over.

So, back to the title of this piece...what is a Cesarism?
A few words from Cesar that are applicable for people as well as for their pets.

I'm a sucker for a well-worded quote, as anyone in my Slowtrav family knows, so it's only natural for me to be as daft about Cesar's quotes as I am about those from Kahlil Gibran, Robert Frost or any of a thousand Zen quote that touch my soul.

I'll share a few of these very cool quotes with you every so often.
If they make sense to you, take them and use them for yourself.
Oh, yeah, one more thing. Watch The Dog Whisperer, when you can.
It's a stellar show.

Some of you have heard me talk about flow from time to time.
To be honest, more than from time to time, actually.
Often, really.
This quote speaks about the energy of flow in Cesar's life...

“I wished to have a TV show - a series, not a special - to change the way people behave with their dogs.
I saw the need and wanted to fulfill the need.
See what happens?
Are you with me?
The universe is always there for you.”
~ Cesar Millan

November 16, 2008

Cesar and Ilusion Millan Foundation - Turn Your Vacations Into Donations!

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A national non-profit foundation...
Supports rescue, rehabilitation & placement of abused & abandoned dogs.


Love to travel?
Love to help rescued and abandoned dogs find loving homes?
Now, you can do both at the same time! This is a totally cool idea...

When you book flights, cruises, concert tickets or buy your travel insurance on Millan Foundation Travel, a portion of the cost of your purchase is donated to the foundation to help shelters rehabilitate and find homes for rescued and abandoned dogs.

That's pretty cool!
Take a cruise, help a dog.

Check it out...
Millan Foundation Travel http://www.millanfoundation.org/html/travel.php

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Look for the click-through on this webpage for their travel section.

In case you can't find it, here's a direct link...
Millan Foundation Travel http://www.ytbtravel.com/millanfund

Now, tell me...who better than Cesar and Ilusion to support the rescue and rehabilitation of abandoned and abused dogs? With the success of their show, The Dog Whisperer on National Geographic Channel, they have now developed a wonderful foundation that assists rescue shelters to rehabilitate and find good homes for rescued dogs.

Good for them!
That's what I call giving back to the fullest. When the Universe gives you riches, it serves you best to pass it on to wherever it is most needed.

How do I about know this great travel site?
I was browsing the internet, I found Cesar and Ilusion Millan Foundation website and discovered a link to the travel section!

I love this idea...people love to travel, and if some of the cold hard cash that we spend on our trips and concert tickets could go towards helping rescued dogs, that's a win-win-win for everyone...you, the Millan Foundation...and most of all, the dogs!

So, check out their new travel section on their foundation's website...and start planning your next trip!
It will feel good, knowing that you are helping a shelter to help a dog find a loving home.

Here's a list of some of the services that you can access on Millan Foundation Travel:
* Plane Tickets
* Hotels
* Cruises
* Rental Cars
* Vacation Package
* Weekend Escapes
* Travel Insurance
* Rail Travel
* Timeshares
* Sporting Events
* Concert & Theater Tickets
* Theme Park Tickets
* Golf Tee Times
* Passport & Visa Services
* Honeymoon Services
* Restaurant Reservations
* Foreign Currency Exchange
* And More!


"Our many years of experience in the rehabilitation of dogs of every breed and background has taught us that most animals can make excellent companions, and all that many of them need is the proper care and a second chance. Too often it is the owner who has given up on a pet, or mistreated it in some way that has made it inhospitable."
~ Cesar and Ilusion Millan
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December 16, 2008

Cesar Millan: Cesarisms...Trust and Respect...

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Chloe, a tiny terror of a floor-mop dog, bites her human when being groomed.
She bites her human whenever she takes something that the human wants.
She bites her human whenever she likes.
Whenever she likes!
Can you believe it?

Cesar Millan cuts to the chase.
No soft-soaping, just plain unvarnished truth.
He tells her this simple little bit of wisdom,
"There's no trust here.
Without trust, there's no respect
Without trust and respect, there's no relationship.
None.
Zero.
If you want to change your dog's behaviour, you have to change your own behaviour first!"

I'm not sure the owner actually got it.
I'm not sure if she heard the message behind his truthful words.
What I am sure of is that I heard the message behind the words...and I got it!
I know this truth already.
Seeing it play out in this episode of The Dog Whisperer just validates for me what I already know.

Here's the thing...
I know that how I am emotionally in any relationship will run that show.
I know that how I show up for my kids and grandkids will determine how those relationships will be.
The kind of person that I am in any given situation will determine how that situation turns out.

Cesar Millan may be a dog whisperer, but for my money, he's a people whisperer.
He teaches those humans how to get their act together and because of that, their dogs become happier and healthier, without changing another single thing in the dog's environment except the energy of the owner.

Good job, Cesar!
I think you should run for office.
I'd vote for ya!

"I believe in integrity. Dogs have it. Humans are sometimes lacking it." ~ Cesar Millan


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Photo credit - Cesar Millan

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to That's my story...and I'm stickin' to it! in the Cesar Millan: Dog Whisperer category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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