“I was not really impressed with his work with dogs
as much as his work with the owners.”
I personally had to sit through multiple episodes of his show one Saturday when I was visiting my daughter and twin Granddaughters. So here is my two-cents.
I was not really impressed with his work with the dogs as much as his work with the owners. He developed their trust and they believed his every word rather quickly, a good trait (may have been a lot of editing though). But after watching the show (it was a marathon of The Dog Whisperer shows, one after another after another –Whew!) I couldn’t help but notice that he was not paying a lot of attention to the dog’s behavior (read “I’m fixin’ to bite you!”), and he literally got bitten every episode I watched. It even got to the point that (eventually out of boredom) that I would say to my daughter and her children, “Watch now, that dog is fixin’ to bite him” and sure enough, scant seconds later there would be blood on the floor. J
My grandkids would say, “Papa, how did you know that was coming, have you seen these shows before?” (Teaching moment) I then was able to point out the type of behavior manifested by the dog that was screaming out (at least to me) Bite Coming. I think at 8 years old they got this better than Cesar did! As a matter of fact, they began to tell me, “Look Papa, it looks like that dog is fixin’ to bite him.” And they got it right 3 out of 5 times (it is possible that the other 2 times they edited out that bite).
Having had a dog (of my own) since I have been 5 years-old) I guess I learned a lot about dog mannerisms and behavior the hard way (read years of doing the wrong thing, and then hopefully learning). I think what we are seeing here is someone who really has not had a relationship with a dog until much later in life (as you pointed out in the review of his show), and has quite a way to go. I think he is a natural actor, intelligent, and has had a lot of help from some influential people (read Hollywood), but I think it is a stretch to call him a dog trainer. But I wish him success as any show that attracts viewers will eventually help people focus on training their dogs so that they become better companions.