Justin Silver: Ricki Lake Of Dog Trainers?

Let me start by saying – I like Justin Silver more then Cesar Millan (aka. the Dog Whisperer).

Why? Because the basic foundation of dog training is ‘do not harm’ and Cesar Millan – with his domineering training style is actually doing harm and putting inexperienced dog owners in danger.

Justin Silver in his new show ‘Dogs In The City’ at least doesn’t do that. And that’s where my praise of Justin and the show ends.

The problem is – the producers of the show have chosen to play the ‘idiot’ card presenting the audience with an collection of imbeciles unfit not only to own dog but to function in society.

Justin’s background is in stand-up comedy and that tell you something about what the show’s makers are aiming for.

Justin’s advice sounds reasonable but I wonder weather the owners he coaches may be beyond help. Moreover, I don’t see how anything he says could be of any benefit for an average dog owner looking to train a better dog.

The Verdict:

Aiming for cheap laughs misses a real opportunity to educate the public about improving dog behaviour.

For those of you looking to benefit from Justin Silver’s training methods I summarised them neatly in my article ‘How To Train Your Dog Like Justin Silver’.


You may be interested in my other articles:


‘How Justin Silver Would Treat Separation Anxiety’     and

‘How Justin Silver Would Treat Aggression’

Or for the selection of latest articles click Here

About Dr Vadim Chelom

Dr Vadim is a house call Veterinarian in Melbourne


  1. Janet Chernin

    I concur with your take on this show. After watching the first episode I am totally gobsmacked at the general lack of common sense shown by the dog owners. Whether his show will weather a ratings sweep will be interesting to see for it appears that the majority of the current crop of so called experts are much more confrontational, and are old school bullies at best.

  2. I do agree with your assessment of the dog owners they highlight in the show, but in general I think the majority of dog owners are that stupid. If people would quit humanizing their dogs a lot of these issues could be avoided. I personally like Cesar Milan’s training methods, but to each his own. I think that in order to get through to some of these dog owners he has to be domineering. If he wasn’t, they wouldn’t listen.

    • Karen, you make an interesting point. In my Veterinary experience most owners are committed and want to learn. I think it has more to do with the show’s producers choosing a certain kind of owners.

    • Janet Chernin

      As to CM and his ‘training techniques’ – being dominate towards the owners is fine by me – BUT he is domineering towards the dogs and that is unacceptable.

      • Precisely. It’s the domination of the dogs that bothers me. Moreover, this kind of domination could put an inexperienced owner in danger.

      • Janet Chernin

        Though I was being tongue in cheek by saying being dominant towards human clients is acceptable – that too is ‘reality’ TV at its worst. Another show that I find more than disturbing is At the End of My Leash – the verbal assaults upon the client/s is relentless and the heavy handed training ‘methods’ are what I would call abusive. Have to wonder what has been edited out on these shows? What are we NOT seeing?

  3. Hunter

    I completely disagree with your comments. I just watched the show, and in all three cases the advice Justin gave was spot on and could easily be used by other dog owners. Furthermore, your article on him completely supports this and actually makes Justin look good. So your comment that he offers no real advice is completely bogus. Your only real criticism is that he tells cutesy jokes. Big deal, it actually makes the show better. I’m a lifelong dog owner whose trained several dogs. And I’ve met plenty of dog owners who aren’t experts on dogs and could use help, from someone like Justin. In the end, you just sound jealous that he scored a tv show and you didn’t.

    • Hunter

      Furthermore, the opinions above that he’s hard on the owners are true, but thats necessary. Many owners are to blame for their dogs issues, and treating them with kid gloves is not the way to do it. They need to step up and be in charge. Also, Justin does have a background in comedy, he also has a an extensive background in training, caring for and rescuing dogs. Do some research next time.

      • Pdelong68

        Is Dogs IN The City still on air? I have’nt seen it lately. I thought it was a good show, Justin is awesome with the dogs as well as their owners! 

        Sent from my Samsung Epic™ 4G

        Doctor ‘Pets’ wrote:

      • I liked the show too. It’s not on air any more, except for some cable reruns here and there. Judging by the way the show was abruptly pulled from the air, I suspect the network execs weren’t happy with it, which is a shame.

      • Patricia DeLong

        Indeed a shame!! Hopefully, Justin is still ding his magic with the doggies!!!!

    • Well, actually I am a little jealous.
      I’ve been practicing my stand-up routine for years, all for that Justin-guy to come along and take it away from me! Just because he is a little better looking! It’s all just botox by the way, you know.

  4. Pingback: justin silver dog trainerDog Training Classes | Dog Training Classes

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