Monday, June 30, 2008

The Dog Whisperer (Season 1) (2004)

Many have recommended Cesar Milan's show, The Dog Whisperer. Segment after fascinating segment, he meets people who love their dogs but have lost (or never possessed) control. When Cesar enters the scene, he sits with the dog owners/clients and gets a diagnostic. He learns about the problems and discusses the dog's issues. It's also a time for him to see what the owner and her/his energy/attitude might be bringing to the problem. Next, he takes the dog on a walk to establish a bond and that he, Cesar, is the alpha dog/pack leader. Then, he works his magic.

The segments feature many different types of dogs, some that I've never seen, such as a Chinese Crested Hairless, a Puli and a Swiss Mountain Dog; however, Boston Terriers were not featured. Could it be because they are dreamy, problem-free dogs? I hope so.

Season 1 kicks off with two great segments: Nunu, a tiny, but jealous and possessive Chihuahua. When Milan tries his "finger teeth" technique on Nunu, it's as if Nunu has taken a turn in The Exorcist.

The next segment features King, a gorgeous black Great Dane. Kane has experienced a trauma that has left his owner unable to take him to the school where she teaches (also where the incident took place). Her anxiety is nurturing Kane's anxiety. There's one segment where a dog goes nuts if the phone is answered and when the toaster goes off. Another dog runs obsessively in never-ending circles. One dog chases the light, any light. The issues are seemingly endless.

No matter how serious or unnerving the dogs behave, the owners seem committed to working it out. Often, Cesar is mentioned as the dog's last hope.There are some celebrities that enlist his help. One was a woman who appeared on a Petco commercial with her dog, Jackie Zeman from General Hospital and an Oscar-winning producer. The show is enjoyable but I don't recommend trying to watch an entire season in a short period of time.

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