dog whisperer

Illustrated by Kazuhiro Kawakita

 dogは「犬」。whispererは、動詞のwhisper(小声で話す、ささやく)に人を表す接尾辞がついたもので、直訳すると「犬にささやく人」。だが、何も犬に内緒話をしようというのではない。 犬とコミュニケーションができて、手なずけるのが上手な人を指す新語。つまり、dog training(犬の調教)の達人のことだ。カタカナ読みは「ドッグ・ウィスパラー」。
 アメリカはペット王国である。なかでも犬は最も愛される動物だが、“how to keep dogs”(犬の飼い方)となると、なかなか難しい。飼い始めた当初は可愛がるが、途中で嫌になって虐待したり、棄てたりする身勝手な飼い主が後を絶たないのは、日本と同じ。虐待された犬は人間を恐れ、また非常に攻撃的になったりする。そこで、そのような犬のリハビリを行い、社会復帰させるdog trainer(犬の調教師)が必要となる。
 ナショナル・ジオグラフィックTVが2004年から始めた人気シリーズ番組に、“The Dog Whisperer”がある。プロの調教師のシーザー・ミラン氏が手に負えない犬(英語では、difficult dog)を、犬の心理学に基づいた独自のトレーニング・プログラムで見事にリハビリさせる趣向だ。
 ミラン氏は、一般的に犬を飼う上で注意することとして、exercise(運動)、discipline(しつけ)、そしてaffection(愛情)を挙げる。そのうち最も重要なのがexercise。犬の散歩(walking a dog)は、犬の運動になるだけでなく、飼い主との関係を深めるのに重要という。さらに、“To be happy, (dogs) basically need a good job, and good food, and a pat on the head.”(犬が幸せになるには、よくやったと言われるような行為と、よいエサ、そして頭をなでてやる必要がある)とした上で、“Americans tend to overdo on the affection and underdo on the exercise.”(アメリカ人は、犬にベタベタし過ぎるわりに、犬の運動は足らないという傾向がある)と指摘する。
 ところで、dog whispererの原型はhorse whisperer。つまり、horse training(馬の調教)の達人。19世紀の初め、英国でダニエル・サリバンというアイルランド人調教師が、やはり虐待や事故に遭ってトラウマ(trauma)を抱えた馬をリハビリさせたという。サリバンはその方法を秘密にしていたが、馬に顔を寄せて話しかけているように見えたので、whispererの語が生まれたそうだ。サリバンのテクニックは、アメリカ人調教師のウイリス・パウエルに伝えられ、“Tachyhippodamia; or, The New Secret of Taming Horses”(馬を馴らす新たな秘密)という本として今に伝わっている。
 犬も馬も人類の長い友達である。彼らとうまくやっていくコツは、“Love your friends.”(汝の友を愛せよ)。しかも、正しい方法で。The Sankei Shimbun (November 15 2009)

Top dog whisperer Cesar Millan to share his secrets in Australia

In a stunning display of the dog whisperer's "pack power,'' the TV superstar had them literally eating out of his hands at a Sydney dog reserve.

Ahead of a national seminar tour, sharing his secrets to "transforming dogs and empowering their owners,'' Cesar Millan took aim at those blaming bad dogs or breeds for attacks and anti-social behaviour.

Having raised his two sons around American pit bulls, the Emmy-nominee said like powerful cars, humans need to "understand and control the power of dogs.''

"It's not the dog, it's the human. We have created breeds with certain power, such as pit bulls and we have to take responsibility for that," he said.

Blog live with Cesar Millan at 11am below

Widespread issues with dangerous dogs is not a "problem with aggression, but a problem with education.''

"There is a reason why it is mandatory for you to take a test to drive a car because of the danger, the power, the responsibility. It should be the same for us to understand and control the power of dogs," he said.

According to Millan, dogs, like people, are facing obesity and anxiety issues like never before - the result of being indulged by their owners.

"They go buy a toy, or some treat to cover up their guilt because they didn't take the dog for a walk, which it needs,'' he said.

The charming 42-year-old built his dog psychology empire from humble beginnings - born in Mexico and moving to America as an "illegal."

His first legitimate job was as a limousine driver for Hollywood's A-list, encouraged by Jada Pinkett Smith (the wife of Will Smith) to turn his pet expertise into a business (she paid for his English tutor).

Training the pampered pooches of the rich and famous, Millan launched his hit TV series, The Dog Whisperer in 2004.

His philosophy is founded on "calm, assertive energy'' and three principles: exercise, discipline and affection.

"Dogs want the same things we do,'' he told The Daily Telegraph - "trust, respect and love.''

"I have learned to raise my kids because I have raised so many dogs. The goal is the same. I want a kid who achieves balance in life, before wealth. You can be wealthy and miserable," he said.

A big sky thinker, Millan believes aggression in dogs is a symptom of unstable owners.

"Aggression is just the outcome. It's your responsibility to understand the animal and the psychology of that species, not the other way around.''
by: Holly Byrnes From: The Daily Telegraph (November 10 2011)