I not keen on Victoria but use some of her methods.
I like Ceaser but only use what I agree with.
I think Vic methods are ok for your average pet dog but would not work with some of the aggressive dogs I've had.
I like to take bits from all different trainers & never advice anyone to soley follow 1 trainers advice, shop around see what works for you & your dog.
Victoria has had success with some extremely aggressive dogs without making them terrified of her.
I haven't watched enough Cesar Milan but what I have watched, and observed in his name - sometimes freaks me out. The alpha roll - where a dog gets its head squished into the ground - I've never seen that work for anyone except Cesar and I think he gets it to work by the "avoidance" principles ie the dog feels better when he lets go. Ie similar technique when using an e collar or prong collar (and unlike Victoria - I do believe those can be used successfully but like Victoria - not by any of her customers who have clearly demonstrated they do not have what it takes to make those adversive tools work). So avoidance / escape - you apply an unpleasant stimulus and release it as the dog complies with what you want, eg comes closer to you. Or stops struggling in the case of alpha roll.
But the trouble with Adversives, is that you can do a great deal of harm with them. So it's not the greatest idea to make a TV show that uses them because the people who are having problems with their dogs - need one on one supervision with a really good people-dog trainer, they will not have any success just by trying an adversive without any guidance (or by copying Cesar).
So Victoria's methods being all positive, the worst that can happen by copying them wrong is that the dog gets fat.
I think alot is done in Ceasers name that he would not approve of.
True that vic's methods are harmless & misused & misunderstood Ceaser methods may not be.
I agree that poeple have trouble using what they have seen without a trainer to help them. Timing is so important & so many poeple have terrible timming & just don't know it.
With help they could have it pointed out & corrected but a telly show will not really help them.
This is a contentious issue and many people are firmly in one camp or the other, but I find you have to be versatile with dogs and be willing to try something different if you aren't getting the results you're after.
There is a least one website devoted to hating Cesar, but I've also seen a few dogs trained with only positive reinforcement that rule the house and their owners.
So I suppose it depends on the dog in question.
But as for Cesars methods, they must be put into context and the dominant aggressive approach is only for older problem dogs.
Don't try it home with your new puppy when it's imprinting it's view of the world or you could seriously mess it up.
Puppies need to know their place but never be scared out of their wits.
I've seen this too and I'd still blame the owners lack of dog training skill or knowledge.I've also seen a few dogs trained with only positive reinforcement that rule the house and their owners.
Susan Garrett is an all positive trainer - though she does use "absence of reward" for corrections or guiding the dog. And her dogs do not rule the roost. Well not directly. She has had her whole home customised to accomodate dogs and dog training.
I have only ever seen one of Cesars shows and wasnt hugely impressed but he has obviously done some good things for dog ownership from all accounts. I would need to see more to form a better opinion.
I too have rehabbed a severely fear aggressive dog and flooding would have made her a complete basket case and put her into meltdown. She responded much better to the type of methods that Victoria uses. I had to use desensitisation/counter conditioning psychology on her to help rewire her brain. I dont think it was the type of psychology Cesar uses though.
I found myself an excellent trainer who was well versed in showing me how to work with my fear aggressive dog using these methods and the importance of timing and reading the dog. That is when I really learnt.
Last edited by Kalacreek; 01-11-2011 at 01:29 PM.
Many of the top WA agility and obedience dogs are trained using positive reinforcement in fact Australias top 2 obedience dogs are, and they work with such joy and are so beautifully behaved. Their trainers are masters of the art of training using positive reinforcement.
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