Cesar Millan animal cruelty investigation just a misunderstanding, says Nat Geo Wild
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/11/2016
Cesar Millan's animal cruelty allegation is just a misunderstanding, according to Nat Geo Wild Channel.
Millan is being investigated for animal cruelty after an incident aired on the former Dog Whisperer star's current reality show Cesar 911 in which an aggressive dog named Simon bit the ear of a pot-bellied pig and drew blood at a Santa Clarita animal training facility, The Wrap reported.
Los Angeles County police and animal control officers paid a visit to the Dog Psychology Center, Millan's 45-acre dog rehabilitation ranch, on Thursday to investigate Millan, a self-taught dog behaviorist, in response to an online complaint stemming from the incident which aired on Nat Geo Wild's February 26 broadcast of Cesar 911.
Nat Geo Wild released a statement about the animal cruelty accusation, insisting harm to the pig was an accident and Millan handles all of his animals with precaution and care.
"Cesar Millan has dedicated his life to helping dogs and to showing how even the most difficult 'problem dog' can be rescued and rehabilitated. In a recent episode of the Nat Geo Wild series Cesar 911, Cesar works with an aggressive French bulldog/terrier mix named Simon, who has a history of attacking other animals, including his owner's pet potbellied pigs," the network said.
"A short clip from the episode was shared online and showed Simon chasing a pig and nipping its ear, causing the ear to bleed. The clip caused some concern for viewers who did not see or understand the full context of the encounter. We have included an additional clip from the same episode... to provide missing context."
The clip shows Millan carefully introducing Simon to the pigs at a distance while he's on his leash. Because Millan wants his animals to cohabitate and be at peace with one another, he takes one small step at a time to make Simon comfortable in the pig pen. After feeding Simon in front of a pig, for example, Millan worked his way up to having the pig take the dog for a walk, which was adorable to watch.
"Cesar has created a safe and controlled environment at his Dog Psychology Center (DPC) in California in which to rehabilitate some of the most extreme -- or 'red zone' -- cases of dog aggression, such as Simon's. It is important to clarify that Cesar took precautions, such as putting Simon on a long lead to assess his behavior, before making initial corrections and removing the leash," Nat Geo Wild explained.
"The pig that was nipped by Simon was tended to immediately afterward, healed quickly and showed no lasting signs of distress. As the additional clip reveals, Cesar and his animal pack effectively helped Simon to overcome his aggressive behavior toward other animals; as a result, Simon did not have to be separated from his owner or euthanized."
Dog Whisperer aired on the National Geographic Channel and its Nat Geo Wild sister network from 2004 to 2012. Cesar 911 debuted on Nat Geo Wild in 2014.