Wednesday, December 17, 2008

TV worth watching

Any of you watch Dogtown? What a fantastic show. It's all about the huge dog sanctuary/rehab center run by Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab which is four hours outside of Las Vegas. Call me crazy but it sounds like a great place to go for a visit and while I'm there maybe the staff can help me teach Stella and Rocky some better manners.

John Garcia, one of the trainers at the Sanctuary, made a guest appearance on the Ellen Show recently. It's all a little bit obsequious (at one point Ellen tells her guest that she'd go work at Dogtown "in a heartbeat" which only begs the question, well why doesn't she then?) but, hey, it's daytime talk TV.

Here's the segment, at least until it gets yanked from Youtube:

One thing you won't get from the segment, but which you will get if you watch the actual Dogtown show on National Geographic, is how different their rehabilitation methods are from that other dog rehab superstar, Cesar Milan, the Dog Whisperer, another National Geographic program. Talk about old school vs new. It's the difference between diving into a pool vs tiptoeing into it. There's a good comparative study of the two schools here at Dog Star Daily and while I'm not sure I agree totally with the largely anti-Cesar Milan sentiment, the author, Nicole Wilde, brings up some thoughtful points.

As for me, as long as the dogs come out okay and safely homed at the end of it, I'm good with whatever works.


Brent said...

The conversation over at Dog Star Daily is interesting (I'm prefering to not get involved over there).

My complaint always is that it seems that one "side" is always assuming that the other "side" is wrong.

I just think there is more than one way to train a dog - and I think different tactics can have different levels of effectiveness with different dogs and scenerios.

I'm with you -- whatever works so that the dogs, and sometimes the people -- are safe and happy.

Fred said...

Yeah, I never did understand the one size fits all philosophy but what I understand even less is the antagonism that gets built up around defending differing opinions. How can we teach our dogs how to behave with each other when we can't even do it ourselves?