Congratulations go out to Kathy Sdao, our friend and ClickerExpo faculty member, who will be writing a regular dog behavior column for msn.com at their recently launched dog site. Kathy's column will appear few times a month in the "Dog Talker" section. Kathy, a trained scientist, is a gifted teacher and trainer. She has been a practitioner of clicker training for more than 17 years and is highly respected among her peers in the training world. Kathy has taught and trained an incredible variety of animal species. Her passion for training is matched only by her skill.
It's nothing but a picture, but what a great picture: A 15-pound house cat defending his property scares a black bear up a tree.
This week, Malcolm Gladwell wrote a fawning piece about Cesar Millan in the New Yorker (May 22). Gladwell shows why he's a very good writer, but not a good reporter (which may be the reason I thought his last book, Blink, was a vapid but nonethless enjoyable read). In this article, Gladwell doesn't even indicate that there is anything controversial at all about how Millan achieves his ends. No scent of behavioral science enters the discussion. There's no attempt on Galdwell's part to be objective, ferret out alternative opinions or provide balance. Malcolm is definitely not in the middle. He's wonderous.
From the Statesman Journal in Salem, Oregon, an article about not clipping pet birds' wings and instead using clicker training to help keep them safe:
Most pet-bird owners wrestle with the decision about wing-clipping early in their birds' lives. Salem veterinarian Dr. Madeline Rae said for most owners, the decision to clip is based on two simple thoughts: to keep the bird safe and to keep it from escaping.
I'm sure a few people reading this won't exactly be surprised, but having supporting research for this might be quite groundbreaking. DOLPHINS may be closer to humans than previously realised, with new research showing they communicate by whistling out their own "names".