Skip to Content

Accusing Cesar Millan of Animal Cruelty – When Dog Lovers Lose Perspective

“Dog Whisperer” Cesar Millan is under investigation for “animal cruelty” after a recent episode of his Cesar 911 show, according to the Los Angeles Times.

I think we all know where this is going.


This is not about “cruelty.” It’s about shutting someone down for using dog training methods different than your own.

It’s about the Animal Rights Movement getting attention and taking advantage of true animal lovers.

Cesar does not need me to stand up for him. Actually, I’ll lose subscribers for mentioning his name.

But there are good people out there, true animal lovers, who are sometimes influenced by the Animal Rights Crazies. So that’s why I’m writing this.

This “investigation” started after an episode of Cesar 911 where Cesar was rehabilitating a French bulldog mix (so we’re talking SMALL dog) for serious aggression around pigs. I saw the episode, which aired in late February, and thought nothing of it.

In it, there is a brief moment where the dog nips a pig on the ear, causing the pig to bleed.

According to the L.A. Times, the animal cruelty allegations began after an animal rights activist saw the episode.

From the L.A. Times:

“The dog that was in question, that Cesar was attempting to train, broke away from him in the video, and immediately charged the pig. Now, what we’re hearing from the [complaining party] is that the biggest concern is someone had that pig, a male adult was holding one of those pigs, those rear legs, and holding the pig up, which made the pig squeal, which made the dog [go] into a frenzy. And it immediately charged at that pig. And the dog attacked,” Reyes said. [Aaron Reyes is the deputy director for the County of L.A. Department of Animal Care and Control.]

Before filing the complaint, the activist called TMZ and let it know that he was going after Millan, Reyes said. The complaint against the celebrity dog trainer was filed soon after.

Get the full article here.

Do you want to see some pigs that are truly abused?

Check out any factory farm in the United States. You’ll see some horrendous treatment of living creatures there, and it’s not even illegal.

But those pigs aren’t on TV. They are hidden.

What a strange world we live in if someone truly thinks a pig on a celebrity dog trainer’s 45-acre dog training ranch has it rough.

Cesar’s pigs are likely some of the luckiest pigs alive on this entire planet.

I know I’m pointing out the obvious here, but we have lost perspective.

Of course, this whole situation has nothing to do with the pig or animals at all. It’s about power and attention from a movement that was lost a long time ago.

Any true animal lover will focus her time on helping animals who are truly being abused or animals who need to find a home, get off the streets or receive basic care.

Some suggestions to make an actual difference:

– Make a donation to a small, local, independent animal shelter or rescue group you trust. They are providing safety and new beginnings to pets in your community. Not sure who to donate to? I recommend Labs & More San Diego.

– Educate yourself on the conditions that pigs, chickens and cows live in before ending up in supermarkets. At the very least, appreciate the hidden suffering they go through all their lives for our benefit.

– If you prefer positive reinforcement dog training (and most of us do), use your dog as an example and teach others about how you reached a high level of training using rewards, a clicker, treats and patience.

What are some additional ways animal lovers can help?

Cesar Millan animal cruelty investigation

Image used with permission from, photo by Alan Weissman.

Have an opinion on this?

Submit a letter to the editor.

Related posts:

Has “pack leader” become a bad word?

Is it OK to love a pet that hasn’t been abused?

I’ll be watching “Cesar 911”

Sign up to receive training tips & more in my weekly newsletter:

Is Austin the Most Dog Friendly City in the U.S.?
What Kind of Chews Are Best for Puppies?