Sunday, May 27, 2007

Dog Whisperer, my left foot.

Cesar Milan, dog intimidator

Gracie is a lovely, bouncy Labrador retriever who gets all excited over the opportunity to chase a chicken. Look at her at the beginning of the video: ears and head and tail up, eagerness and concentration in her facial expression, lively and quick movements.

Now look at her at the end of the video. Do you see a dog who is "happier because she's no longer obsessed" with chasing chickens? No. She's a dog who is stressed and fearful because some bullying, hissing stranger has just appeared in her formerly idyllic life. He's acting out his dominance/submission fantasies on her against her will and her formerly trustworthy family members aren't even trying to defend her.

Sure, you can control your dogs by thoroughly intimidating them, but why would you want to?


Anonymous said...

How stupid can people be? You have birds and you have a bird dog. Now you don't want the bird dog to be a bird dog? What are you smoking? Dogs are bred for particular purposes. They aren't furniture.

hipparchia said...

they aren't furniture.

ed, i love ya, man! [and i am so stealing that line from you too. watch me.]

people can be pretty darn stupid, can't they? demanding that a bird dog completely give up its interest in birds. that's a lot like asking people to just stop having sex. abstinence! it works!

it's true that a lot of labs have no idea that they're supposed to be bird dogs, but poor gracie [judging from her lithe and athletic frame] looks like she's from field/hunting lines. birds are one of the great joys in her life. at least, they used to be.

actually, gracie's owners were reasonably smart, if a bit clueless and lacking in self-confidence, before milan got hold of them.

the man [gracie's owner] talks of their not imposing their [the owners'] will upon their dog, and later you can hear him, sort of in the background, telling milan that gracie is feeling intimidated. milan, conscientious dom that he is, immediately corrects the man: no, gracie is being submissive.

[sigh... ] i can see that i've climbed up onto a soapbox that i'm going to have trouble getting off of. great to see ya, though!

Anonymous said...

This is the kind of crap that helps me understand Sam Kinison: sometimes the urge to scream at human idiocy is all we have left.

I love you, too.

hipparchia said...

yep! [--->]

Anonymous said...

You know, I've been the cause of far worse. ;-)

hipparchia said...

i'm pretty sure i have too. :D

Anonymous said...

A Dr. Phil for the dogs, yeah?

Well, you know how I feel about so many humans' presumption that we are superior to other species and somehow have the right to determine their behavior, so I won't get on my soapbox, tonight.

I believe that if a dog is a member of my family, he needs to be socialized, just as my children are. Certain rules of living to help avoid hurting others, etc. But I think it's over the line to think we own any animal...that we have the right to bully them into anything.

hipparchia said...

our pets have always been family members, for as long as i can remember. there are a few basic rules to learn about courtesy and getting along with others, but they're thinking, feeling creatures just like we are, and deserve the same kindness and respect you give to people [although i tend to like the critters better than the people].