Malcolm Gladwell profiles Cesar Millan, the "Dog Whisperer," in the New Yorker this week (the article is not online, but this Q&A Gladwell did with Ben Greenman about Millan is), and Gothamist cannot wait to get our issue from the mailbox. If you don't know who Cesar Millan is (like, you watched the South Park episode and thought he was made up), he's a total phenomenon. He communes with dogs, is able to walk huge packs of them, and even has a the Dog Psychology Center to study dogs who seem violent are really aren't (it's the humans' fault, Millan says). Everyone wants to know how to manage their dogs, so Millan is the go to man because of the way he speaks to them.
The NY Times Magazine interviewed him and he explained how humans must remain dominant over their pets. Also, our worries about keeping a dog in an apartment were totally unfounded, it seems:
Do you find that dogs on the West Coast or in the suburbs get more exercise than New York City dogs, most of whom live in apartments and don't have backyards?
The backyard is not exercise. It doesn't represent freedom. It doesn't represent fun. It doesn't represent balance. The backyard is just going back and forth between walls. People in New York don't have the backyard and are forced to walk the dog more often, which is the best thing that can happen to dogs.
Yet in your book you insist that many Americans and especially New Yorkers don't know how to walk a dog properly.
Every time I go to New York, I see dogs in front of people. Oh, brother. The dog should be behind the person. In the natural dog world, the dog is always behind the pack leader. Pack leaders never, ever tell the dog to go in front.
Does anyone make their dog follow them?
His show, The Dog Whisperer, is on the National Geographic Channel. He's even headed to the Bronx Zoo June 17-18! You can submit your dog to be "whispered" to, but Millan is being sued by a pet owner over one training incident.