Saturday, 17 September 2011

The One Show - foot in mouth?


First fatality? First of many?
Via the One Show facebook page:
Karen Rhodes
Congratulations The One Show and the BBC! I have just come back from the vets to pick up medicated shampoo for my dog. A lady has just had her dog put to sleep due to copying what she saw on this show last Friday! The dog had never snarled or bitten, but she has a Grandchild and the dog grumbled a couple of weeks ago when her husband walked past it whilst it was a chewing a bone. They tried the method Saturday, the dog bit her Grandchild last night, thankfully it was not bad but they felt they couldn't trust the dog. There was no food involved. That is one dog you have murdered, one child you have hurt and one elderly couple that now feel they could never have a dog. How many more will there be?

RSPCA Statement in response to The One Show feature on dog behaviour – 21.9.11

We are investigating several complaints received following an item featured on The One Show on Friday, 16 September. However, because that investigation is now active we cannot comment further on this specific instance.

The RSPCA only recommends reward based training methods. A number of scientific studies have found an association between the use of aversive training techniques and the occurrence of undesired behaviours in dogs. As such, they may worsen the behavioural problems they aim to address.

Anyone who wishes to find a suitable dog behaviour expert can find out more at with further information on training techniques available at

 STOP PRESS: Victoria Stilwell offers to fly in to put Roxy back together.

We alerted Victoria Stilwell - of It's Me and the Dog fame - and her response has just been posted on her facebook page:
"It doesn't surprise me that the BBC One Show execs are standing by their trainer Jordan Shelley who showed such irresponsible and dangerous techniques in order to curb a dog's foodbowl aggression. It shows that there is still so much ignorance when it comes to truly understanding and teaching dogs. The BBC pulled out of Crufts for breeding cruelty but yet they permit these inhumane techniques on their channel. Please to the general public - do not watch this man because you try his techniques at home, you WILL get bitten. Disgraceful.

"I'm worried now that the family is in danger of getting bitten by their JR after the abusive techniques that were used by Jordan shelley on the BBC's One Show and if so the JR will get put down. If anyone knows who the family is, please tell them that I will come over to England free of charge and teach them how to stop their dog guarding in a humane and beautifully effective way. No point in just complaining, I want to save this dog and this family. Please send this to everyone you know."

Did you see BBC1's The One Show on Friday? Specifically the feature on Roxy the Jack Russell that was protecting her food bowl, her mistress's bed, chewing up the post etc?
Did you see the very young, attractive Cesar Millan fan Jordan Shelley?
Here's a link to BBC iPlayer if you missed it or need to see it again.
You need to go to about 30 minutes in - just after Freddie Mercury's mum and sister:
If you are unable to view on iplayer here is a link to a blog that has a clip
What is your reaction?
I'm about to write my editorial for next month and I'd really like to hear some feedback from others.
Has anyone tried this at home with their aggressive dog?
How did you get on, if so?
(If you're thinking of doing it, can I urge you not to and recommend you first seek advice from a member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors or the APDT or another reputable positive trainer.).
Have you written, phoned or emailed the show?
Any dog experts read that dog's body language and tell me what you see?
How would you have tackled this problem had the TV called you?
Can we find an equally attractive and charismatic - young yet experienced and qualified dog trainers to take over this spot on The One Show?
Here's my suggestions which appear to tick every feel free to nominate others.

Karen Wild
Chirag Patel
Steve Mann
Mat Ward

I am looking for case studies - people who watched the show and have tried this method on their own dog. Have a sighting of a Staffie who took the adult's boot off. Any others?

Here's the Press statement (received Tuesday afternoon - Sept 20th)... please don't read when drinking hot coffee please... you may need to sit down.
"We appreciate that many dog lovers have strong opinions on the subject of dog training, however the family with the problem dog Roxy are extremely happy with the outcome. Jordan Shelley, who runs a dog treatment centre in London, will display other techniques
in future films.
Jordan himself will also be putting out a line talking about his approach and why he employed the technique in the programme, it may be an hour or so and I'll call you with that.

I will also call you now to give you a bit of background
BBC Comedy and Entertainment"

Just come off the phone with the press officer and they are really delighted with Jordan as they have had more than 500 people ask for his help. No plans to take this segment off air. I pointed out that of course people will be keen to try what is portrayed as a quick-fix and that is in itself the problem - making it look like you can sort out complex behaviour problems by just throwing your weight around. ("But it wasn't a quick-fix, he spent three hours with them.")
As you all know it would take months to properly solve this problem. And that technique on a medium to large dog would be spectacularly dangerous.
It was positioned by the press office as there are just two ways of doing things and all this fuss is just people who don't like dominance training methods kicking off.
But surely even Cesar Millan would not now be doing this sort of thing - he has evolved sufficiently for this not to be his first approach to a dog resource guarding? And his TV series would certainly badge his more extreme stuff as something that should never be tried at home!
This Jack Russell segment, I was told, was recorded six weeks ago and the family are apparently delighted. But as many have said - Jordan's just taught a dog not to warn when he's unhappy. A dog that no longer warns is far more dangerous.
Jordan, they told me when I asked for qualifications, is self-taught and runs the Sanctuary in London. Well that may explain it, the Sanctuary do great massages and beauty treatments but I wouldn't ask them to train my dog. Anyone heard of this organisation? How long has it been trading? Anyone know any customers?
It seems to me the BBC have dismissed all the complaints so far as being from just one half of the dog training world and that the other half think his methods are great - despite not receiving any fan mail from any training organisations.
But I disagree. I see the unification of the dog welfare world - not a jealous and petty faction. Everyone thought it was dangerous and harrowing and something that definitely shouldn't be shown on TV.
It's like someone watching Holby City and then going on This Morning as an expert and telling everyone how to take out their own appendix. Only slightly worse somehow - as you'd not get 500 people volunteering the next day to be the guinea pig for DIY nose jobs!
This is not a dominance versus reward-based petty spat.
This is a BBC show that on one front exposes cowboys and on the other gives Billy the Kid a national platform.

Jordan Shelley has issued a statement:
"As I said on The One Show, I respect and practice both reward based and dominance techniques and I use a mixture of both, depending upon the specific dog and its problems. Safety comes first in all my training and I would never approve of causing distress to any dog. The family were present for the entire filming and subsequently I have visited them on a couple of occasions and they say they are delighted with the improvement in Roxy's behaviour." 
Comments please on this comment and please say in your comment your qualifications, affiliations and the length of your experience training dogs if - that is - you define yourself as a dog trainer. If posting as a self-taught, which is obviously good enough for the BBC, also please say. How would you have dealt with this case and how many follow-up visits would you want to make for you to feel sure this dog's serious problems were resolved? Did Jordan's actions cause this dog distress in your opinion? Did he use a mixture of reward and dominance in this case? Did he use either 'technique'? What would Cesar Millan have done if that was who he was trying to emulate? Can we get Cesar to comment? And what element of safety was deployed in the 'training' of this dog.

This evening some concerned dog owners have started TWO facebook pages to register their wish for the Dog Fixer to be removed from The One Show. Do go and Like the page if you agree. Here's a link - if you haven't yet joined facebook this maybe your reason to!  and When I looked they were already close to 500 likes combined in just a couple of hours. You can also find the page just by searching "Get Jordan Shelley off BBC One Show". United the dog world can achieve so much.

And the Daily Mail have joined in too:

Qualified and experienced dog behaviourist Murial Brasseur is on BBC Radio Oxfordshire at 12.15 today talking about this subject - do tune in and indeed phone in!

There's also now a petition:

Why not ask your favourite charity or organisation to get involved. Have they already complained? Please ask them to forward a statement for inclusion here:

Here's the latest ones:

"It is a great shame that the BBC have chosen to engage an unqualified  and inexperienced young person to give advice about dog behaviour on the 'One Show'. There have been great steps forward in recent years in the  development of appropriate standards of both qualification and  experience in animal training and behaviour modification, for example with the setting up of the Animal Behaviour and Training Council. There have also been considerable developments in scientific knowledge and  understanding of why dogs show undesired behaviours, leading to widespread consensus about how such behaviours should be addressed for both long term efficacy and optimal welfare. The advice given on the One Show did not reflect either current knowledge or practice - the material presented was incorrect with respect to interpretation of the dog's  behaviour, and the techniques used were outdated and clearly caused the  dog considerable distress. Whilst it may appear to 'cure' behaviour instantly for the purposes of entertainment on TV, using this type of confrontational approach does not address the underlying cause of behaviour, and will often lead to further problems in the longer term  which are more difficult to resolve. I would strongly encourage viewers to not emulate the techniques shown on the One Show with their own dogs, as there is a serious risk of being bitten when 'challenging' dogs with established aggressive responses.  I hope that the widespread opposition to this inappropriate material by the major welfare, behaviour and
training organisations in the UK encourages the BBC to reconsider their use of this inexperienced person as an 'expert' in this field."

RCVS and European Specialist in Veterinary Behavioural Medicine
Senior Lecturer in Companion Animal Behaviour and Welfare
Department of Clinical Veterinary Science
University of Bristol
Langford, Bristol. BS40 5BU. UK.

The Kennel Club is very concerned about the training techniques used by Jordan Shelley on a recent episode of The One Show and has written to The One Show to represent its views.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: “Although we do not know Jordan Shelley’s background, qualifications or experience we are very concerned about the dominance based techniques that were used on the show. The methods used were potentially counterproductive and may have caused unnecessary distress to the dog concerned. There is also a very real concern that it will encourage copycat behaviour at home that may result in dog owner injury and harm.

“The Kennel Club encourages the use of positive reinforcement training wherever possible, which is effective, produces long lasting results and a positive training experience for both dog and owner. We have sought assurances from The One Show about the future training advice that it will be dispensing.

“We recognise that it is extremely difficult to know which techniques and methods are acceptable, in a field where opinion is so split, or to know which dog trainers are from credible and reliable backgrounds. That is why the Kennel Club developed the
Kennel Club Accredited Instructor Scheme, which has achieved City and Guilds recognition. It is the only scheme in the UK to give an external, independently verified qualification to its members. This is a real and credible step forward and it means that people can have the peace of mind that when they go to a Kennel Club Accredited Instructor they are going to somebody who has met a credible set of externally verified standards.”

 Julie Bedford, head of behaviour at The Blue Cross animal charity, said: “We were extremely concerned to see the abusive dog training techniques used by Jordan Shelley on The One Show and we have already been in touch with the programme about this. Our years of experience at The Blue Cross supports the extensive research which shows that the ‘dominance theory’ is incorrect.  Using such outdated methods to intimidate dogs to suppress behaviour can be extremely dangerous for the owner and leaves the dog stressed, frightened and highly likely to bite without giving any warning signals.
"The Blue Cross always recommends reward-based training, using treats and toys, which is much kinder and more effective in teaching a dog to change its behaviour through positive associations."
(Julie Bedford BSc (Hons), PGCE, PG.Dip (CABC), CCAB, clinical animal behaviourist and head of behaviour at The Blue Cross animal charity)

“Wood Green, The Animals Charity is appalled by the BBC’s decision to continue airing Jordan Shelley’s idea of dog training on the One Show.
"As a nation we rely on the BBC to be a trusted source who would seek accredited professionals in every field, which they have not done in this instance.
"Mr Shelley showed disregard for health and safety, if viewers had been tempted to try his technique for food guarding on a larger dog they could have been seriously hurt.
"Dogs are sentient beings and over the past 20 years much more scientifically based training methods have emerged to aid our ability to communicate with mans’ best friend. 
"A qualified, experienced dog behaviourist always works in partnership with the dog’s vet, a full background history must be obtained in order to assess the reasons why the behavioural problem has occurred in the first place, and behaviour modification must be carried out at a pace that the dog can deal with, learn by and benefit from.  
"All behaviour is a symptom of an emotional state, change the emotion and the behaviour change comes much more easily. Shelley’s idea of training is to ensure that the dog is so scared of its owner that it retreats into itself and accepts such abuse as being a part its every day way of life. 
"While Shelley’s approach might suit some owners in the short term, it may have long term adverse implications, ie the dog effectively becomes a ticking time bomb. The dog’s emotional distress could rise to such a point that it may suddenly react badly because it can take the abuse no longer. Consequently, the dog might attack a person and, as a result, be put to sleep. We cannot condone so-called training methods that could lead to a dog making a mistake which it pays for with his life.”
Wood Green’s Head of Training and Behaviour Sue Ketland

"The APBC (the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors) is particularly disappointed that the BBC chose to show Jordan Shelley using extremely confrontational techniques when attempting to train a Jack Russell Terrier on The One Show.

"The methods used were unnecessary, dangerous for owners to imitate and have serious welfare implications for the dog involved.

"We are surprised that the BBC is not aware that a large number of welfare and professional organisations have already warned against using methods such as that employed by Mr Shelley

"Whilst it is relatively easy to intimidate a dog in the way demonstrated by Mr Shelley, it does nothing to address the underlying causes of the problem behaviour.

"The APBC strongly urges the BBC to consider using a properly qualified professional in any future programmes in order to demonstrate methods that can effect lasting change, are suitable for owners to use themselves and do not risk compromising pet welfare."

Members of the Association of Dogs and Cats Homes* were horrified to watch Jordan Shelley’s training methods on The One Show on Friday 16th September. The methods that he uses will only serve to exacerbate the dogs’ aggression and fear in the longer term.

Dog training has moved on a pace since such punitive methods were used and most trainers and behaviourists will agree that reward based training has the most effect with long term positive results.

We fear that families watching the programme will try to emulate these barbaric tactics with potentially catastrophic results.

We look forward to hearing that you will consider showing a more realistic view of dog training on The One Show.

Yours sincerely,

Clarissa Baldwin, Chairman ADCH

* there are 90+ members of the Association of Dogs and Cats Homes based throughout the UK, Ireland, Channel Islands and Isle of Man; these include the largest national charities as well as regional and local rescue organisations.

Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity is deeply concerned by the training methods used by Jordan Shelley who was featured on The One Show on Friday 16th September. The main issues we have are:

  • A dog with such aggression and fear issues should never, ever have food taken away by members of the family. There was no regard for the safety of the family - using methods like this will only cause the dog to suppress the behaviour and there is a strong possibility that, when the opportunity arises, he will revert to the aggression.
  • There is no consideration for the dog's emotional state and the motivation behind the behaviour - until these are addressed then you can never consider the behaviour to be resolved.
  • Any other pet dog owner attempting these methods will put themselves and their families at risk of serious dog bites.
  • There was no warning to 'not try this at home.’
We are surprised that The One Show has featured such aggressive training methods as demonstrated by Jordan Shelley and are worried that families will try these methods at home. Jordan Shelley also stated that he ‘agrees with all training methods’ which really does not make sense when there are so many different training methods used throughout the UK.
Dog trainers all over the UK use reward-based methods to train dogs very effectively. Where dogs have behaviours which owners find unacceptable, such as aggression or destruction, qualified and experienced behaviourists achieve long term changes in behaviour through the use of established and validated techniques of behaviour modification without subjecting dogs to training techniques which may cause pain or distress.

We always advise dog owners to carefully consider the help they choose to train their dogs or tackle behavioural problems, in particular to ensure that the trainer does not use any techniques which may put the welfare of the dogs or owners at risk.

Lynn Barber, Head of Canine Behaviour and Training at Dogs Trust



EJ said...

Have complained on their facebook page and through BBC's online complaints form. Extremely angry! These methods are wrong and proven so by science. Positive methods are the most effective and most fun for all involved and now we're going backwards again!

Jacqui said...

I thought it was horrendous. I have emailed the BBC and posted on the One Show Facebook page to complain. That poor dog could so easily have been helped with its guarding issues using positive training. That man was just a bully !!

Jacqui said...

I thought it was horrendous. I have emailed the BBC and posted on the One Show Facebook page to complain. That poor dog could so easily have been helped with its guarding issues using positive training. That man was just a bully !!

Anonymous said...

I'm in the wrong country to see this programme, but there are some comments here:

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Saw the show and was not happy afterwards, in fact it depressed me. One the one hand we have the John Bradshaw book "In Defence of Dogs" just recently published in the UK, aimed at improving relationships between dogs and owners, and on the other, someone on a tv show practically explaining how to get bitten. I think it was dangerous advice, which may well not last when he has gone.

Why not simply use other techniques such as helping the dog associate humans approaching with Good Things? There are a variety of ways to do this, depending on the exact situation/dog etc.

Also the dog should have had a vet check in case the problem was caused by something medical.

It was badly done, BBC, badly done!

Ludivine said...

I'm not a dog expert apart from my own experience of having dogs and watching dogs/ being interested in dogs' behaviour/ reading lots of different dog behaviour books and I can tell you all I see in this dog is Stress caused by the very clumsy/ horrible way the food bowl agression has been tackled. I can't see many similarties between this young man's way and Caesar Milan's way and anything I see this "trainer" as very clumsy at best. In fact, I think he's causing the dog undue stress in the way he delt with him!
I can't believe the BBC endorsed such techniques by showing this on national TV! AWFUL!

IMC said...

I think a lot of the questions posed in the blog will be answered by others so I will keep this brief:

Dogs Today, please fix it for me to have Jordan come and work at Iron Mountain Canine for a day, we all have running bets on how many dogs will be surrendered over the next few weeks because of people attempting that method for food aggression at home (would you believe we've already had our first email, the family tried the method shown by Jordan, on a full size male staff, luckily all they lost was a shoe).

Attempting those methods on any breed is a fool's errand, attempting them with a giant breed is a recipe for disaster.

Anna Osborne
Iron mountain canine rescue

PS- Jordan may need to pack something more substantial than Converse sneakers if he rises to the challenge...

Tracy Greenhill said...

Absolutely disgusting!Terrify,bully&stress a dog to make it comply,what does that "teach" a dog?Most of the time to fight back!Even people who are new/learning to train dogs understand the basic fight or flight behaviour!Even if the said behaviours are now supposedly stopped im sure other things will arise as the underlying problem hasnt been addressed.Ceasarites like him need to ousted!We need trainers/behaviourists to be properly regulated.I would also like to point out that i suspect the poor dog may have been sedated for studio purposes!Would a dog who was previously highlystrung&that stressed out be that relaxed in a strange place with lots going on,noises,lights,people ect?

Danni Damon, Pet Behaviourist, Member of CAPBT said...

I was appalled and saddened to see the little Jack Russell in such distress. Clearly a case of resource guarding, this guy has absolutely no understanding of the dogs emotional state or even learning theory. Repeatedly forcing the dog to feel she needed to resort to aggressive behaviour to keep her food safe, is tantamount to abuse. He clearly works on the 'pack leader', 'alpha male' training theory, which we now know does not apply to domestic dogs and humans. It seemed more of an ego trip for him.

Trying to remove a dogs food bowl while she is eating will only encourage her to guard it. Resource guarding is a natural behaviour for a dog and most dogs show some level of it. In the wild where food is scarce, the dog needs to protect it for its own survival and has retained this instinct.

A therapeutic approach using graduated food bowl exercises and clicker training allows the dog to make appropriate choices for herself, without stress, keeping her calm and focussed. Rather than trying to remove the food bowl, we instead add even tastier stuff to it, teaching the dog, over time, that a human approaching her food bowl is in fact, a great thing!

Its so sad that these outdated pack leader techniques which rely on punitive methods and punishment, are still being used in the name of 'training' and causing untold distress to dogs everywhere.

Becky Marshall said...

I have seen the footage of this so called dog trainer, I was appalled at his technique, that poor little Jack was terrified, why are people in such a hurry and want quick fixes, it may have looked like a quick fix but my money is on that poor little dog having even more issues now than when it started! Why not get a positive reward based trainer in, who would spend the time to work out why this poor little dog has issues and work through them in a positive way. In my opinion all the One show has managed to do is probably put the statistics for dog bites up and the number of dogs being put to sleep up if people attempt to use this Cruel, and quite frankly dangerous technique.
I am not a dog trainer, but I have rescue dogs, my young rescue collie boy came to me with food guarding issues, I just used my common sense.If I went near him as he was eating he would snarl and snap at me, so I gave him the space he needed,every time he had some food I would take one step into the room then leave, over time I took more steps into the room until he realised that I wasn't a threat to him, this did take a while to do but it was well worth it, now I can just walk into the room, step over him whilst he is eating or ask him to move, he will just spin around out of the way while his head is still in the bowl. I can even fuss him while he is eating now, all it took was a bit of time and patience. What is the point of taking a dogs food away from it, never understood that, lets face it we would be rather miffed if someone did it to us!!

Pat said...

I have written a complaint to the BBC and ticked the option that asks for a reply within ten days.

I own a rescue jack and was appalled at the way this one on TV was treated.
Mine was trained with kindness, using clicker and reward. The practice shown was barbarous, if he needs lay a foot on a dog he also needs to change career.

Carri Westgarth said...

Hi Beverley,
As a Full Member of the APBC, experienced trainer, and researcher into dog-human interactions, I was outraged by what I witnessed on The One Show. There is a serious risk that people, including children, will emulate what they saw and get badly bitten. And not to mention the obvious stress the dog was showing through her body language and lip licking. She certainly had not learned to enjoy people approaching her eating, which would be the aim of modern training methods. However, Jordan the trainer cannot really be blamed- he is young and does not know any better. Many trainers began their careers using these dominance and punishment-based techniques, including myself, but with experience have realised that there are far more effective and safer ways to train a dog. Lets hope this negative reaction encourages him to go on some courses and engage with more experienced professionals, resulting in an improvement in his approach.

Penny said...

Its a sad time for the dog training profession, in one evening the BBC allowed one man to condemn many dogs to harsh training methods in the view that they are daring to be dominant.
The poor terrier seen last night was left terrified and exhausted, and I feel the owners will be left with many greater problems thanks to the fallout of their "quick fix" Why ? when we have many great dog positive dog experts in this country did the BBC choose this Cesar Milan want to be ?
Along with many like minded dog professionals I have also complained to the BBC and posted messages on the One Show facebook page.
Working in rescue I will be one of many, picking up the pieces of far too many broken dogs, that the previous owners will have attempted to train "like the bloke from the telly" and most likely these dog will have bitten ! Shame on you BBC !!

senga thorpe said...

I have already posted my digust at the one show on their facebook page.

I hope they rethink their views and get Beverly in to talk about praise & reward methods of dog training!

Anonymous said...

Blackshuck said...

This sort of thing is why I got rid of my TV licence 6 years ago so have had to wait for Iplayer to watch the clip. Glad I don't pay their wages. Where on earth did they manage to find someone as dreadful as him?

Dawn Hart said...

Just watched the footage of the One Show, the so called Dog Trainer and I was shocked to the core that Jordon is using these outdated and dangerous techniques. The dog was clearly in distress and showing avoidence. Anybody trying this method will be very lucky not to get seriously injured. There are so many reward based ways to deal with this problem, which are so much kinder.. The dog isn't cured!!!! It has just shut down to avoid the stress that is happening to it, the problem will reaccur again as it hasn't be taught anything at all!!!

credible said...

I entirely agree with what the trainer said about finding the appropriate mix between reward and dominance based training. The results bear witness to his having got the balance right with this particular dog. How he might have dealt with a big, aggressive GSD or Rottweiler is another issue.

I'm less enthusiastic about the prospect of inexperienced people trying the method and getting it horribly wrong. But then, this family managed to get it horribly wrong ... what methods, if any, had they used in the past?

A more useful format for this segment of The One Show might be to show and compare the correction of similar problems in both adult and young dogs. I'm sure many people would be amazed to discover how much easier life can be if bad habits are not allowed to develop.

Richard Mumford (@caring4dogs)

Liz said...

I was horrified, and for the first time ever I haave complained to the BBC and after the show I immediately posted a comment on their Facebook page.

I have a fear aggressive Staffie ( initially with people and dogs), and if I had used methods like this he would have bitten someone and be dead now.
PLease put pressure on the BBC to try to undo some of the damage they have done so that people and dogs will not be put at risk because of this illconsidered show of brutality.

Liz Mitchell

Dawn Hart said...

I was appalled when I saw this, the dog was clearly distressed and showing avoidence, she never learnt anything just shut down and gave in to the abuse!!!!! She is not cured, she will probably have many more problems after this awful bully had finished with her!!! His methods are cruel and outdated, the whole thing reminded me of the one and only episode I have seen of the Dog Whisperer, and I was disgusted then too.. They need a decent trainer like Victoria Stillwell or somebody else that uses reward based training.. I hope no children saw this as they may try it and get bitten!!!!!!

Wellie Boots said...

Thank you for reminding me that I was going to complain about this. Off to do so now.

Sure way for people to copy and get bitten. And poor dog.

I was surprised because I thought you said Chris Evans is a good dog guy.

Wonder how the dog and family will be doing in a few weeks - perhaps they should revisit. Better yet, get a long term solution behaviourist to have a slot on the show to model a sensible and positive approach.

Liz said...

Just watched the show and complained! Talk about putting dog training (if you can call it that) back years. How dangerous and if it results in just 1 person being bitten or 1 more dog in rescue then it is too many

Chirag Patel said...

Hi Beverley

It was certainly entertaining TV for most non-doggy professionals. I think for so many people this is now considered appropriate behaviour to deal with a dog showing aggression, possibly it could even be considered tame especially after the habituation of seeing such behaviour on our screens over the last few years by other “entertainers”. Wasn’t it beautiful to see a “fixed” cute dog lying at her owners feet being so well behaved at the end; I can see how people can fall for this almost Disney like ending. But sadly and most probably this could not be any further from the truth.

Dogs who feel safe and secure with humans around their resources have no reason to show aggression. A dog growling and snarling may be trying to warn, if these warning are ignored or punished then he may learn that there’s no point in warning people any more and the only thing that works is biting. This probably makes the dog a lot more dangerous.

Coming back to feeling secure and safe with people around a dog’s resource; many owners are still taught in puppy class that they should be able to take away things from their dog like removing a puppys food bowl while he is eating. Imagine how insecure and protective that might start to make you feel as a human, why then do we expect dogs to put up with it! I teach my owners something they often consider similar but I think is completely different. I ask them to teach their dogs to love having and feel comfortable with people around their food bowl, beds etc… We do this by brining the dog gifts when the owner approaches the dogs’ valuable resources. Eg. As the owner walks by the dogs food bowl as the dog is eating she throws a small piece of chicken into the bowl, this teaches the dog to look forward to the owner visiting him while he is eating his meal. (Owners who have dogs that are already protective of resources should consult a qualified trainer before starting any training.)

Chirag Patel

wellie boots said...

Just found this response of FMforum (googled Jordan Shelley). Shows how his method has been interpreted:

"He really is a bit of a find i think.....and I like his unorthodox training methods. Whilst most "dog whisperers" are all about empathising with the pampered little shits he just kicks them in the face!
I expect there will be some complaints though. "

A&E had better be stocking up on the tetanus vaccine stocks :(

Anonymous said...

I think that Jordon was absolutely correct when he stated there are two schools of thought: one based on dominance and one on reward based training and you have to find a balance between the two.

I also think that those who have posted and are averse to his method on the basis that it caused stress to the dog in question are totally missing the point. That dog was under stress all day every day for as long as it had been engaging in said behavioursprior to Jordon's arrival on the scene! Do any of those posters think that dog was not stressed in thinking it had to guard its owner, it's owners bed and bedroom? Do they really think that dog was not stressed in beleiving it had to guard the front door and attack any itmes posted through it? Do they really think that little dog wasn't stressed when it believed it had to guard it's food bowland the space around it?

Of course it was! So, young Jordon caused it some stress for a brief period of time by comparison to what it had endured before and the result was a dog that was relieved of its belief that it had to guard everything. And what about the stress the family had to live with? Doesn't that count? If a solution hadn't been reached what would be the fate for the dog?

Reward based training does work but sometimes it is not the answer and this dog clearly thought it had the right to control the humans movements about the home. Wrong! The home and everything in it belong to the humans and lines need to be drawn in the sand. Never once did Jordon hurt the dog. He refused to back down to its controlling actions and the dog learned just where the lines were drawn.

The modern trend of rewarding everything is likely to produce as many ill-adjusted dogs as it has produced ill-adjusted children who resort to aggression when thawrted, disappointed or told 'NO'.

As far as I can see, that will be a sad day for dogs.

saran said...

Just watched this footage and am so angry. Why go near a dog while he was eating anyway? Why set up such an adverserial relationship with the dog? All he talked about was 'challenge' and 'hard nut to crack' and watch his face while he was looking at the dog it was real dislike and confrontational. THat poor dog is now going to spend his life being bullied and roared at. This guy, like Cesar Milan should not be allowed anywhere near dogs. Bet the BBC went out of their way to find someone who would fit the bill as the British version of MIlan never mind what he did to dogs. Get him off TV before he does any more damage!!!

Tony Cruse, Tc Dog Training. said...

It appeared to me that the dog shown on The One Show, was 'resource guarding' The Terrier was guarding the young owner, her bedroom and the food bowl. To simply wear a pair of Wellington boots is not teaching the dog anything. There was no rewarding behaviour that the dog could choose as an alternative. What I witnessed on the One Show was not training, it wasn't even safe management.

I'm shocked that after all these years of research and studies regarding dog behaviour, it has come to 'challenging' the dog and getting into a battle. Where was the training and positive reinforcement? How was the cause addressed? It wasn't!

Perhaps the BBC should so a little more research before they choose their next 'dog behaviour specialist'.

Anonymous said...

I did get the call! I do what I always do and didn't phone back in response to the voice mail. Nobody with concerns about their reputation would take part in quick fix TV shows.

Three hours to resolve fear and possessive aggression issues (months of behaviour modification in the real world) - that's the TV world not the real world.

You haven't mentioned the "trainer's" disregard for health and safety - both his own and the clients'. Gym shoes around a dog that bites feet and no preventative steps to make sure that the family were safe. To screen this is totally irresponsible.

Having coped with the mess left behind after Dog Borstal - I don't expect anything responsible from the BBC in terms of dog behaviour problems. It seems a shame that it can screen a ground breaking programme such as Pedigree Dogs Exposed, but still lives in the dark ages with programmes about dog behaviour.

I appreciate your editorial will focus on the methods used, but it would be helpful if you could point out that to tackle the issues, a decent practitioner would have taken a behaviour history and then provided a behaviour modification programme which would have incorporated ALL of the dog's issues. Quick fixes leave behind more problems than they solve and do not resolve the underlying problems.

Regards, Wimbledon Dog and Puppy Training

PS In terms of body language - fear and anxiety.

Louise said...

Who is this amateur, Jordan Shelley? Nobody who knows anything about 'proper' dog training has heard of him before last Friday. Enough has been said of his methods, disgusting etc. I 100% concur.
Who at the BBC employed him? A relative perhaps...
The BBC MUST balance this outrageous mistake with a properly trained, qualified behaviourist that can be so easily found on the web. Is this the year 2011 or have I slipped backwards in a time-warp?

Ems said...

Watched it just now - disgusting, that poor dog shut down and fearful to even try to eat from the bowl after he had completed FORTYFIVE minutes worth of bullying and confrontation.

Why, when there are the likes of Sarah Fisher, Zak George, Victoria Stilwell, Sophia Yin, Ian Dunbar... the list goes on and on and on, and there are many many more excellent positive trainers out there who would be just as good, do they have to pick this ignorant little nerk.

I notice a few people commenting who DO NOT UNDERSTAND positive training. Positive is NOT namby pamby, babying, spoiling nor is it permissive.

Positive training HAS its consequences, it is not all waving (in fact it is very LITTLE indeed) food under dogs noses, it is about teaching them to make the choices WE wsant them to, and enjoying working for us.

You CANNOT balance domination and fear with reward and the freedom to try new behaviours. They cancel one another out. A dog trained by punishment FEARS trying new behaviours. A dog trained by reward is willing to try new behaviours to earn rewards - they are the opposite and both states of mine cannot exist at the same time. How can you avoid punishment AND seek reward at the same time!

KJS said...

Although I am a great believer in reward based training, I am also of the opinion that there sometimes needs to be a consequence following a dogs unacceptable behaviour.
In my view, this dogs behaviour was unacceptable. Although Jordon is obviously young and does not have years of experience, I agree that there needs to be a balance between reward and dominance based training methods.
All dogs are different and the same method does not work for all dogs. The method used on the One Show certainly would NOT be advisable with a GSD or Akita for instance. However, at no stage did he hurt the dog; he may have blocked her with his foot, but he did not kick her. As for causing the dog 'stress and anxiety'....the dog was already stressed and anxious (not to mention her owners), feeling the need to defend what she considered hers, be it food, the bed or her owner. This was probably due to incorrect training and socialisation when she was a puppy, but the programme was not long enough to go into all of this. Perhaps this issue should be addressed on a later show, as prevention of bad behaviour is a far more favourable option.
As an owner and breeder of many years experience, I firmly believe that there does need to be a balance of reward and discipline.
Kind, reward based methods are ideal, but some dogs have been allowed to get out of control. Some have a stronger or more dominant personality, and/or less desire to please than others, so sometimes 'harsher' methods are required (and by 'harsh', I do not mean cruel). I run many of my dogs together and if the lower ranking members step out of line, the discipline from the higher ranking members is instant and sharp. I think a good dog trainer/ listener/behaviourist (or whatever you wish to call it) is one that is able to adapt their training methods to achieve the desired behaviour, a happy dog and a happy owner.

RosieTaylor-Trigg said...

Dear Beverley,
Thank you for giving us the chance to put forward views on Shelley's 'dog training' segment. I was mostly horrified at the lack of research carried out by the One Show with regards to the type of dog trainer ( i say this title loosely!) to have one their show. With no formal qualifications and his idol being Cesar Millan, a man criticised by animal welfare and dog training organisations worldwide, it it baffling to me why Shelley has been given a tv slot!

He barely asked any questions to the owners, promised a 'quick fix' solution and then proceeded to bully the defenceless JRT into staying away from her food bowl. Does he truly think this will help her guarding problem? By teaching her that people coming near her food bowl means it 'will' be taken away! Surely what we want to teach her is that people coming near her food bowl is a positive thing as things are added, never taken. Counterconditioning at its simplest. And he failed to do this.

What we need now is a fully qualified behaviourist from the APDT, or APBC for example to air their views on the One Show and demonstrate a better way to train a dog!

As a trainee behaviourist, I currently hold more qualifications than Shelley and with only 3 years experience do not consider myself fit to appear on television, and yet he feels he is ready for this...unbelievable!

Anne said...

I wonder which member of the One Show production team is related to Jordan?

From your earlier blog post this week Beverely about the One Show's dog car safety section, it seems the car safety petition website also sells electric shock collars on the same site. Perhaps the One Show research team should investigate welfare issues a little more before airing these people.

It makes you wonder what other things in other areas the BBC are airing that is outdated and unsafe.

Elaine Cowling said...

to answer one of the previous comments, of course the stress of the owners should be taken into account and yes, the dog has obviously been living with stress. What we witnessed though was completely unnecessary levels of stress in the dog, as well as a major health and safety issue for the people involved. According to the 5 freedoms, which form the basis for the Animal Welfare Act (2006),animals should have freedom from fear and distress.. this could be achieved much more humanely using systematic desensitisation to create a positive association with people approaching the food bowl etc., rather than using the 'flooding' technique that was demonstrated. I would ask anyone who has a phobia to consider how they would feel if forced to confront their fear without any escape route, versus a gradual desensitisation programme, because, this in essence was what was done here. Reward based training was completely appropriate for this situation, however, it would not produce the 'quick fix' that was required for the sake of tv. Positive training methods are more humane than the punitive methods used by so many. It is about time that people stopped using training as an excuse for abusing animals and turned to the many, well qualified, experienced trainers and behaviourists that we have in this country.

Susan Fryer said...

I saw this too and was mortified. This is just not the way to solve this issue and really wasn’t suprised when CM was mentioned. Why oh why don’t the BBC consult the correct associations. I belong to The Guild of Dog Trainers and have forwarded this to them. I have helped clients to rehabilitate their dogs over food gaurding and it definately wasn't a quick fix. Ok so the JRT seemed to become submissive to the family shown (well in the edited bits he was) but what will happen when the next little child or stranger approaches this dog……………..I dread to think!!

Rach said...

I was appalled at The One Show, I don't profess to know a vast amount about training dogs, but I know cruelty when I see it. I sent the following email to the BBC via their complaints page.

Jordan Shelley's attempts to 'train' the aggressive terrier on the One Show were not only an example of cruelty to animals, but also potentially setting a dangerous precedent should other owners try his pathetic, outdated, intimidatory bullying of the dog.

The behaviour shown cannot be 'fixed' by a few minutes of physical confrontation with the dog; aggressive behaviour that has been exhibited for years will take months of consistency and hard work by the family to unravel. Bringing an idiot such as Jordan Shelley in to temporarily suppress such aggression by using a combination of physical force and fear will merely result in the dog being more aggressive in the future.

Seeing a dog cowering and stressed does not make good television. Whilst a reward based training method may not have the same dramatic impact for your viewers, at least the BBC will be demonstrating a responsible approach to training dogs, and not therefore running the risk of someone being mauled and seriously injured by their own dog, as they try to emulate the confrontational approach shown by this imbecile, who's clearly watched one too many episodes of The Dog Whisperer.

I would be very interested to hear what qualifications Jordan Shelley actually has, I assume he's been to college or university, and spent years studying for his degree in Dog Behaviour? Or has all his 'knowledge' come from The Discovery Channel. Sadly, I suspect it's the latter. Is he a member of the APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers)? If not, why not? They are a governing body of all the reputable, qualified UK Dog Trainers. Watching a couple of hours of Holby City does not mean I'm a suddenly a qualified Doctor.

I do know that I wouldn't allow Jordan Shelley within a mile of my dogs, and that the BBC is pro-actively broadcasting cruelty to animals and irresponsible, outdated, punative training methods that will merely serve to exacerbate existing behavioural issues in the long run.

Whoever contracted Jordan Shelley should be ashamed of themselves; they should be embarrassed - not only by their lack of research, but also their salacious interest in creating a dramatic segment, as opposed to having a qualified Dog Behaviourist give a realistic view of the fact that dog training is not a quick fix, and keeping the safety and well being of the dogs in question as the priority.

Jordan Shelley is NOT a dog trainer, no matter how naturally talented he might believe he is. The Channel would not accept someone who merely has an interest in medicine performing surgery or diagnostics live on screen, yet the BBC feels that it's acceptable to broadcast this shameful display of clumsy, amateurish and imbecilic attempt at training. How very irresponsible. Should the BBC continue to allow an unqualified layperson to broadcast cruelty under the guise of being an expert, the Channel is little more than a sham.

Frances said...

Just what the world needs - a CM wannabbe. Drayton Michael might have watched the show ...

Kate MacNaughton-Hughes said...

I have been training dogs with behavioural issues (specialising in aggression) for more than 20 years and can only describe the segment as barbaric.
Your trainer - and I use the term loosely!! - claims to follow Cesar Millan's methods. I have watched Cesar Millan working - in person and believe he would be equally disgusted by the claims made. The methods used had absolutely no resemblance to anything Mr Millan would place his name near.
I have never in all the extreme cases I have worked with ever resorted to the outright bullying, fear mongering tactics displayed in that segment.
I am the proud owner of 7 large dogs, passed to me with issues of one sort or another and I would never allow anyone to behave in that fashion towards animals in my care, I pity the gullible family who will now have to live with the damage done to their beloved pet!!
I work extensively with local rescues helping to rehabilitate (some rather large) dogs with issues more extreme than you showed and I find encouraging and supporting the dogs and handlers to find a balanced approach to that rehabilitation is far more valuable and longlasting a technique than anything your show promoted.
When a company claiming a reputation of fairness promotes this sort of animal cruelty you cannot be surprised at the outcome, where was the care for the animal or the explanation of how the dog sees the situation.
One of the principals I (and because it seems relevant to you - Cesar Millan) promote beyond all others is that your dog must TRUST you. How can you trust a bully?? Beating a dog into submission albeit mostly a verbal beating would see a member of the general public subject to prosecution by the RSPCA and I await with baited breath their response to Jordan Shelley's actions!
I sincerely hope to never hear this man’s name mentioned on your channel except to hear his resignation from the world of training.
I will also, along with many others, be awaiting your broadcast apology to dogs and their owners throughout the UK, which should come sooner rather than later.

alison said...

i didnt actually see the programme, only heard about the one show having a dog trainer and wanting people to get in touch if they needed help... came across your blog and i think im having second thoughts about contacting them! i have recently been given a rescue dog, he is a chinese crested, he is lovely and very placid however he gets so upset when he is left alone. if anyone has any advice as to how i can get him used to being left it would be gratefully appreciated... thankyou

Anonymous said...

In response to Rosie Taylor Trigg, Counterconditioning is used to treat dogs that have behaviourial issues based in fear and anxiety.

This JR was not showing any fear! A dog that shows fear will have its body weight pulled back, will be crouching low and ready to run. This JR was going forward on the attack. True to its breed, it is fiesty, determined and as Jordon said has a high prey drive.

So why would you use a method of behaviour modification that is not recommended for these behavioural problem?

Kerri said...

Hi Beverley, this is the complaint I sent to the BBC yesterday:
"The feature on yesterday's programme where a so called "dog whisperer" appeared to 'cure' an aggressive Jack Russell was scientifically inaccurate, cruel, dangerous and an absolute shock to any properly qualified canine professional watching. Resource guarding is a complex problem in many pet dogs which needs careful assessment and a professionally managed plan which covers all aspects of the dog's life including diet, exercise, training and behaviour modification. I personally have worked with dozens of dogs who have developed resource guarding as a direct result of having their food taken away from them. Furthermore I have worked with many dogs who have had to learn to trust people again after being treated with these so called "dominance reduction programmes". The theory behind so called 'dominance' in dogs has now beeen proved categorically erroneous and downright dangerous. When Cesar Milan came to the UK a large number of prominent animal welfare organisations (RSPCA, APDT, APBC, Blue Cross, The Dogs Trust etc) joined forces to campaign against the very techniques seen last night on the One Show - for more information pleae see Furthermore the Animal Behaviour and Training Council has been set up to help the public find out how to employ animal trainers and behaviourists who have proper qualifications and professional accreditation. Does the 'dog whisperer' seen last night have any recognised qualifications? The correct way to correct this behaviour is to help the dog to feel happier about having people near the things they value using a stress reduction programme after a full assessment. Furthermore the behaviour programme should be well rehearsed by adults well before children are allowed to try. The fact that this 'trainer' used physical force to cause a great deal of fear in that poor little dog is inexcusable, but to teach children these techniques and to broadcast them on TV is unbelievable. All that dog learned was that people are very scary and the behaviour referred to as 'calming down' was in fact a dog effectively shutting down - a very dangerous state to induce in any animal, especially one that lives with children. I wonder how this 'trainer' would have dealt with the same level of aggression in a Rottweiler or a Doberman or a German Shepherd. I am a 5'8" female with a degree in canine behaviour and training and I have worked with that level of aggression in all those breeds and many more, and not once have I had to use even a raised voice, let alone physical force. We used to be able to trust the BBC to do it's research and get it's facts straight - no longer it would appear." Kerri Bee FdSc CBT, Member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers 00999

Laura Patricia said...

I have written my own thoughts on this matter here:

What's interesting is that one of my readers actually jumped down my throat to defend Jordan! Read the comments for yourself - I am hoping the lady gets back in touch but we'll see.

I will also be taking time to write a response to the BBC - I cannot imagine what they were thinking when they hired him and I know of dozens of positive, reward based trainers with formal qualifications who would love to take his place!

Anonymous said...

I have to say that once again I am dismayed at the apparent hypocracy that exists within those who profess to be trainers who only use postive reinforcement methods to train dogs.

Those who profess to use only 'kind' methods of behaviour modification hold their hands up in shock/horror at the first mention of 'negative reinforcement' and claim to train/modify by rewarding those behaviours they want and ignoring those behaviours they don't.

Classic example is a dog whose begging at the table or jumping up at owners is becoming a liability so they 'ignore' the behaviours. I have pointed out time and again that the dog finds this method of changing behaviours quite distressing, probably more so that a quick negative check/reinforcement.

They don't see that the dog tries harder and harder to get the pay off it used to get for its behaviour and it is extremely frustrated before it hits the 'extintion burst'.

What was really happening here with the JR? Its unwanted behaviour of using aggression to control people was being ignored. It was not getting its usual 'pay off' of them retreating from its space. It continued to try until it hit and went through the 'extinction burst'.

Why such a fuss when Jordon uses it here? Its the method receommended by modern reward based trainers for years? And what's more, they've professed to accept, use and recommend it as kind.

Vicky Welsh said...

As a pet dog trainer, what concerned me most about The One Show's dog training piece on Friday 16th September was not just the failure to address the Jack Russells stress either prior to or during the training session, but also the potentially dangerous training methods used. Qualified professional dog trainers and behaviourists could see the pitfalls of what Jordan Shelley was doing, but many unsuspecting pet dog owners may think that confronting or challenging a dog that is behaving possessively around food is the way to solve the problem. The BBC didn't even bother to issue a 'don't try this at home' warning. Very worrying.

Vicky Welsh said...

I feel I need to add an extra point about a previous comment that mention that the dog was already living a stressful life prior to the training session. I agree the dog probably did have quite a stressful life but why didn't Jordan Shelley address that first? His techniques despite how it may have looked on camera did not make that dog less stressed. So to say that his session of having the dog extremely stressed was a means to an end and would have solved it's behaviour in the long run is not the case and to reiterate what I have already said here, to the BBC complaints department, and on The One Show's Facebook page, the techniques he employed were ultimately very dangerous.

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe the BBC has endorsed such an amature trainer and approach to dog training and issues such as these.

The most unfortunate thing is that now he has been on tv people will think he is really good and will believe he was in control.

There was no mention of why he thought the dog was doing what she did only that she was aggressive and territorial. Did he not think that all this behaviour may have stemmed back to something more serious!and what was the cause?

I personally am training for my accreditation as a dog trainer and would never even think I was a capable person to go on tv because I know that I am not ready because there is so much I still need to learn. You need at least a decade of experience in training of behaviour to advise people!I have been working with and studying animals for over 10 years. He clearly needs more experience and a change of attitude!

He says at the end that he agrees with both dominance training and reward based training. Yet he chose to use dominance training on a dog that was clearly absolutely terrified of someone taking its food, probably enjoyed jumping up at the mail box because it had never been discouraged and when the mail comes through the box it may have initially startled the dog which led to it going for it and spiralled out of control! and with the bed thing well you dont need to shout at her simply encourage her that it is okay for someone to sit on the bed by using reward based methods and some change of tactics. All these problems were able to be sorted with kind training not shouting and stressing her out!

Throughout the whole thing he taught the dog she had to be scared of him so that she could eat, she had to be scared of the post! Her body language read, lip curls, tail between legs, cowering, avoiding eye contact all of which the dog uses to avoid a situation and calm itself down due to stress.

Has he ever thought of adding nice yummy things to the bowl a bit at a time or encouraging her that it is okay when the post comes through the door she doesnt need to get tense. Okay she will avoid doing these things now but with what consequences? She will be scared of what might happen to her food and the behaviour returns even worse (or worse is scared to eat out of the bowl!) or she becomes that scared of the post box she may not want to go near the door again (gonna be difficult if you want to go out the door with her!)

While doing the food training at one point he says now I'm going to go into her personal space and she attacks his foot- well hello you stick your foot in her face shes going to attack she didnt know what you were going to do!!

At no point does he show an empathy towards the way that dog was feeling, he showed no kindness and just rushed in. Although it would have been awful I'd liked to have seen what he would have done had she actually bitten him or gone crazy because she was crowded and not let go!

I just fear for those people that think this is brilliant and okay to do! This is what kills dogs this is what makes things like the 11 year high of abandoned/homeless dogs worse!

Anonymous said...

Its a shame they didnt find out who or how such a nasty tempered little dog had been bred, why not take it back to it breeder and let them explain!

Kris Glover said...

I wonder what the legal reprecussions will be for the BBC and Jordan Shelley, when people, who try out Jordan's methods, end up getting bitten. Especially considering there was no 'don't try this at home' comment made! Also filming a shaking obviously extremely stressed out dog I personally consider to be extremely unethical and a complete waste of BBC licence payers money. Jordan's treatment of the little dog amounts to nothing less than cruelty and placing any dog in this position is included under the Animal Welfare Act (2006) as being a prosecutable act (included under section 4's under 'unncessary suffering'). There are much kinder ways that could have been used to help this dog with the same results gained and a happy, rather than emotionally destroyed, dog. So lets hope the BBC use a properly qualified behaviourist e.g. APBC and CCAB member, for any subsequent shows! Having walked your teacher's dogs as a child doesn't qualify anyone to start a dog walking business as an adult so is in no way sufficient experience to be advising on ANY training or behaviour matters. For those of us who have spent years gaining qualifications to support our practical knowledge on canine and feline behaviour I am APPALLED the BBC would be prepared to use someone whose only supporting experience was having walked his teacher's dogs as a child. I have both a degree and post graduate diploma in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling and am currently working through a Masters project in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling too. I do this because offering behaviour advice needs theortical backup as well as extensive practical knowledge. I just hope someone properly qualified is used next time!

Anonymous said...

It may not be a breeding problem. Any pup can decide to show aggression when it meets something it doesn't like - could be being groomed. But if the owner/handler is worried by this and backs off the dog learns a very powerful lesson - growl at humans and they move away.

So next time it is in a situation it doesn't like it uses it's freshly learned tool and shows aggression. Owner backs away etc etc and a habit is established.

It learns through the good old basic 'Skinnerism' of what is rewarded gets repeated and so aggression is a learned behaviour. It does not necessarily mean the dog is badly bred or has had a bad experience or is 'afraid'. It's just downright maximising on what it learned and that is how to manipulate situations to its own advantage by showing teeth, snapping and snarling.

Karen Boyce said...

I have complained to BBC, complained to the One Show and tweeted Chris Evans. I have never seen anything so stupid on TV ever! I run a dog training business and I spend all week trying to get people not to use aggression on thier dogs.

Anonymous said...

It may be maximising it's learnt behaviour but that doesn't justify what that dog had to go through!

During the training it showed obvious signs of distress which he proceeded to ignore and carried on bullying it!

All the above comments at least try to explain what the possibilities may be with regards to this dogs problems, there was no evidence of asssessment on his part during the whole recording and they never mentioned that it should not be tried by an untrained person!

He also failed to mention that each dog is case sensitive and a proper assessment should be carried out first! Each case should be treated on its own through careful evaluation!

No explanation of any of these were given!

Ems said...

And again...

Positive training DOES have its consequences - it is NOT permissive, it does not mean the dog can 'get away' with things!

Those of who you think it does, or think it is merely ignoring unwanted behaviour do NOT understand the training methods and I would strongly recommend they do some reading and update their knowledge.

Some of you clearly do not know what you are talking about, and there were better, more EFFECTIVE, ways to teach that little JRT to be comfortable with peoplearound her food than the one used. Ways that would NOT risk someone gettin bitten.

I do not understand why humans see a dog behaving aggressively and feel the need to 'challenge' it and prove they are more scary/more aggressive. We have huge brains and we can think our way round the problem and win the battle without there ever BEING a battle.

Positive training is REALLY devious manipulation using psychology, to outwit the dog and have him doing what WE want without him EVER realising in many cases that there was any other option. It is not fluffy or 'do what you like ill just ignore you', unless it is done WRONG.

credible said...

Let's all be clear on one thing - Roxy attacked Jordan's feet as if they were a couple of rats. She meant business. At no time was she fearful.

Dogs do what works, and at some time in her life, possibly when only a few weeks old, she learnt that agressive posturing, backed up by a set of sharp teeeth, can be a very effective way of controlling those around you. Those around her are the ones who have lived in fear. Not Roxy.

No family dog should ever be allowed to be possessive of anything. Not ever. As soon as possessiveness rears its ugly head, it should be stopped in its tracks. The sooner it's stopped, the easier it is. Possessiveness is not a right, nor a privilege. It's totally unacceptable. My dogs know the rules and as such they are happy for me to take anything from them - their food, a juicy bone, a favourite toy, whatever. They know they'll always get something back, if not the same then better. Teaching dogs to be comfortable in these situations is just common sense.

Was Roxy harmed in the making of this programme? Nothing that was broadcast would suggest to me that she was.

Is Roxy more dangerous as a result of the training? Considering that she was lethal before the training, I don't see how she could be any worse. I know that some of you will say that she's now storing it all up, and will strike without warning, but I don't agree. Let's agree to disagree.

Is Roxy cured? Life's a learning process, isn't it. I'd say she's now more receptive to taking on some new ideas. Hopefully there'll be continued support for the family, which should ensure further imporovement.

Is Jordan a cruel trainer? Nothing that was broadcast would suggest to me that he is.

Will this programme result in inexperienced people trying this method and getting it wrong, their dogs biting them and being put to sleep? Who can tell. Any method of dog training, even reward-based, has the potential for unexpected and unwanted results. Positive reinforcement requires the trainer to have good timing, and many people just don't get it. And how many times have you seen a well-meaning but ill-informed owner reassuring their growling dog, to try and calm it down, when in effect they are positively reinforcing the very behaviour they're trying to eradicate.

Were the BBC irresponsible in broadcasting this programme? In as much as ANY television programme about dog training will never fully convey all necessary caveats, will never explain all possible ramifications, and will always be edited for its entertainment value, then yes, the BBC must take the flak for daring to broadcast this programme. Needless to say, the BBC or any broadcaster must necessarily take the flak for anything they broadcast, because there will always be those who simply don't like what they see.

Anonymous said...

As with many of the people here I was horrified to see this programme. The poor dog obviously had issues and this 'top down' approach will do nothing to help this dog except push it into conditioned suppression. I also express sadness for this trainer who has not been told any other way and has now been pidgeon holed by the bbc.

I am however just as horrified with the comments people have left on this blog. People who claim to be behaviourists but have no knowledge of what 'dominance' really is. People commenting they are horrified with this young trainers method but support other dominance reduction trainers such as Milan and Stilwell. As a +veR behaviourist I understand that if you have a dog hanging off your arm you must do whatever is needed to keep yourself and the dog safe at the time, but the point of ethological management solutions and +veR training is to prevent those situations happening in the first place!

I am concerned about the amount of so called 'behaviourists' out there who have no knowledge of learning theory, RHP, attachment and aggression and personally cannot wait for 2020 when there will be some kind of regulatory legislation in this field.

Anonymous said...

Was the vet referral mentioned at any point? I hope the BBC understand the legalities of 'employing' a 'behaviourist'.

Ems said...

As an APDT member,I am absolutely disgusted that these outdated methods of training are allowed to be shown on TV. Congratulations Jordan the 'dog fixer'.. you have now increased A & E numbers in every hospital throughout the UK. Did you not think that telling people especially children(!) to put on welly boots & let the dog attack would just be JRT owners?!! I now have horrendous visions of children doing this to resource guarding Bull mastiffs, GSDs, Rottie's. I hope they invest in concrete wellies!Reward based training?!.. he doesnt know the meaning of the word. My heart goes out to the poor JRT who endured 45minutes of hell & to the family who now have a JRT who is frightened of them, wellies/feet & now tall dark haired men!! No doubt Roxy will have enough of 'backing down' soon & unfortunately it will be the owners on the receiving end when they least expect it & without their boots on! Surely throwing high reward value treats around Roxy's food bowl then adding to the bowl when she was less anxious be a nicer way to help her & her family?! Why take the food bowl away from her in the first place anyway?! Personally I would have something to say if someone took my roast dinner away from me!!The BBC needs to be made aware they have made a massive mistake by employing a man who uses dominance based style of training. Out with the old in with the new hey!

Justin Kumaran said...

ok, posted on loads of blogs and complained to BBC, feel a bit better now... The dog has what is called resource guarding (where a dog will guard something they see as valuable. It can be food, treats, toys, people, couches etc) The causes are many but can be something as simple as being the runt of the litter and learning to have to fight for its food from a young age. The dog is also clearly stressed and anxious which comes from not having a leader to feel safe with, moreover the feeling of having to protect the owner. So there is problem one to fix. As for problem two, food possession is treated in lots of ways. 1) get rid of the food bowl for now that way the dog has nothing to guard. 2) feed by hand so the dog gets used to human hands as a source of food, not taking food away. 3) make the dog perform a simple exercise, sit, down, or submissive 'give paw' for each bit of food which changes the relationship the dog has around food and humans. 4) scatter food on floor so the dog gets to use its nose and brain whilst eating, (it makes the highlight of most dogs day's far more interesting). 5) If or when you reintroduce the bowl and the dog is eating from it, drop in nice bits of high value food (chicken, fish, turkey, beef etc) so it looks forward to the arrival of a human hand. 6) Teach a leave command (away from dinner time) so you can get the dog to leave whilst eating, then top up the bowl so he can see you dont take the food away if he stops eating but give him more. Please do not bully, intimidate or use force against a dog who is already overwhelmed with stress and anxiety, it will not help

In a way i feel a bit sorry for this Jordan guy. he is young and has watched wide eyed at Cesar Milan thinking 'i want to be like that' Then a long come a tv production company who offer him the opportunity, now imagine the people behind the programme who carry their pugs to work and go awwwwwwwwww everytime their own dog snaps at someone... recipie for disaster, i know because i have trained alot of media peoples mutts.

It is obvious Jordan has a passion for what he does, but equally clear he is a bit naive, as his body language (which is the most important bit) is weak and unsure, even he appears unsure. All he achieved was to tire out a dog after 45mins, teach the dog it is ok to bite people (when he was biting his foot)and strange men in the house will challenge the dog and take away his food. I dont beleive he was being dominant as dominace over a JRT would take seconds to achieve... It just looked like what it was, A young good looking bloke practising Cesar Milan style techniques without the foggiest what on earth he was doing or why he was doing it and in doing so has taught half the population of England it is ok to abuse your dog.. Well done mate

Val Harvey said...

An important point that has not been made is that the behaviour has not been 'cured' it has merely been suppressed. For how long? Anyone's guess. Could be for days, weeks, months or even years. But almost certainly it will appear again. What Roxy has probably learned is that there is no point in growling or baring her teeth (or any other 'dog' signals that she was using), so next time she will may well just bite.

Time and again trainers,instructors and behaviourists have to try and clean up the mess left after a dog has been 'sorted out' by people using aversive 'training'.

What Roxy needed to learn was that people near her food bowl are a good thing. Sadly, she has learned the exact opposite.

Prevention of resource guarding is one of many things owners are taught at good puppy training classes.

I have complained to the BBC

Kerri said...

Really good point Val, in my complaint to the BBC I think I failed to point that out, although on re-read it was inferred in my comment about the dog shutting down but not spelt out. Let's face it the BBC, the trainer and the general public need this spelling out in very plain language - the dog must have a big wide mouthed grin on her face and a whole happy wiggly body (not just a wagging tail)when someone approaches her bowl many times over before you let any child anywhere near.

Why can't the BBC run a series of features teaching the general public about canine body language, how to recognise stress and how to reduce it, how diet affects behaviour, how training affects behaviour, the importance of good exercise, how to introduce a dog to a new baby, how to teach children to interact with dogs and what to do in an emergency, how to teach a dog basic skills in ways that also build a solid bond of trust.

After all isn't that what APDT trainers and members of many other excellent organisations do every day, it wouldn't take much research would it or is that just asking too much?

This 'quick fix' TV started with Changing Rooms years ago and people love it, even when it's living animals that are being abused. What needs to be promoted by a responsible broadcaster is that behaviour problems woudn't occur if people really understood dogs in teh first place. I used to think the BBC was responsible but clearly no more!

Rosie Gibbs said...

For those who say Roxy was not showing fear, she "had issues" or "was attacking" - may I point out that there are 2 ways to survive - flight OR fight. Some dogs, and some breeds, will choose to run or cower to keep themselves alive and safe. Some dogs are bred to be feisty, or just end up that way, and these guys will FIGHT to protect themselves. Fear is not always shown by cowering and backing away, most so-called aggression is in fact fear. Little Roxy was scared, she was scared of the situation she was living in for some reason, she was very scared of people taking away her resources (food and one owner), and therefore reacted by fighting. Jordan fought back, and being beigger and stronger was able to fight harder, until Roxy simply couldn't fight any more, and gave in, turning into a cowering dog who was too afraid to even try to eat because she was waiting for her food to be taken away. Didn't any of you fans notice that bit? She was stressed because of how she was living, she is now even more stressed because they have taken away her ability to let them know she is stressed. That is NOT a success.

I have been there, I have lived through the fear of having such a fearful but aggressive dog that I was wary of every movement I made, I have been attacked for entering my kitchen when there was food in it, all because of what a previous owner did to my dog. But I can do anything now, I can walk right past the food bowl, I can stroke my dog while he is trying to pinch stuff (!), I can remove food from under his nose or even his mouth if I need to - in fact he will bring it to me and hand it over. Not once have I laid hands or feet on my dog, I can't use shouting because he is deaf, I couldn't touch him because he was so scared of hands. But I did it. I am not a behaviourist, I am a first time dog owner, but I did it. It is possible. You just have to use your brain, which sadly many humans are incapable of doing.
I for one hope that Roxy recovers and lives a long and happy life with appropriate help, and doesn't end up dead or one more lost soul in rescue waiting for someone who is willing to take on the damage caused by other people.

Karen said...

To quote the anonymous blogger dismissive of positive reinforcement methods:
"Classic example is a dog whose begging at the table or jumping up at owners is becoming a liability so they 'ignore' the behaviours. I have pointed out time and again that the dog finds this method of changing behaviours quite distressing, probably more so that a quick negative check/reinforcement"

I am not an 'expert' or professional. I am an average dog owner, who also works as a dog walker and am interested in dog behaviour and training methods. I suspect I understand more about positive methods then you though. Your examples above suggest simply ignoring unwanted behaviours. It is not just that - you would also ask for an alternative behaviour that the dog could be rewarded for that would prevent him/her carrying on the desired behaviour. In the case of begging, both my dogs have been taught to go to bed when we are eating to avoid this happening. No 'quick checks' were required and the dogs soon learnt that they would get rewarded for going to bed but ignored if they begged. It was an easy choice for them to make. With regards jumping up, yes, I ignore and turn my back, but as soon as the dog sits I praise and reward - no fuss for jumping, fuss for sitting. Another easy choice and no 'checks' needed. Neither of my dogs have been stressed by this method.

I agree with the majority of comments - I was appalled at the dangerous, outdated methods used and have also sent off my complaints. That poor dog was so obvioulsy terrified of the whole process I'm surprised she hasn't developed a problem eating with anyone near her. As others have said, teaching her that someone being close when she's eating is a 'good thing' is a far more acceptable way of dealing with this issue. OK, it doesn't make such 'good' TV (debateable, I know!) and it may take longer, but the end result is a far happier, better adjusted dog.

Pamla Dawn Walker said...

Dear Beverley, Thank you for highlighting this latest nemesis of dogs. I would like to proffer the thoery of Learned helplessness here. The idea that an animal gives up because there is no point in trying further is usually the reason why these quick fix solutions APPEAR to work to the untrained eye. The work of Seligman (1971) highlighted this when he placed dogs in electrified pens and because they were harnassed could not move when given an electic shock and indeed he proferred the theory of learned helplessness. These severe and frightening one trial learning experiences bypass normal perceptions and hit the limbic system where emotions are processed resulting in a state of fear being elicited, which sadly we saw after Shelley had abused this dog and not as we saw was the original problem. However, Seligman furthered his work, thankfully, in areas of positive psychology. My point is the show suggested this dog appeared to be cured but those of us who have been pracitising in the animal behaviour world for quite a few years realise that this dog was not cured but put in a state where it gave up trying and through tiredness (I beleive this went on for 45 mintutes!), fear of being kicked and perhaps entering a learned helplessness state gave up his resource guarding. With a problem (not naughtyness!) like this there is no quick fix but a whole realm of 'ologies' that have to be looked at. Ethology, ecology, psychology, neurobiology and mainly 'causology' all have to be taken into account when dealing with a behaviour that s not acceptable to others.

Pamla Dawn Walker said...

Dear Beverley, Thank you for highlighting this latest nemesis of dogs. I would like to proffer the thoery of Learned helplessness here. The idea that an animal gives up because there is no point in trying further is usually the reason why these quick fix solutions APPEAR to work to the untrained eye. The work of Seligman (1971) highlighted this when he placed dogs in electrified pens and because they were harnassed could not move when given an electic shock and indeed he proferred the theory of learned helplessness. These severe and frightening one trial learning experiences bypass normal perceptions and hit the limbic system where emotions are processed resulting in a state of fear being elicited, which sadly we saw after Shelley had abused this dog and not as we saw was the original problem. However, Seligman furthered his work, thankfully, in areas of positive psychology. My point is the show suggested this dog appeared to be cured but those of us who have been pracitising in the animal behaviour world for quite a few years realise that this dog was not cured but put in a state where it gave up trying and through tiredness (I beleive this went on for 45 mintutes!), fear of being kicked and perhaps entering a learned helplessness state gave up his resource guarding. With a problem (not naughtyness!) like this there is no quick fix but a whole realm of 'ologies' that have to be looked at. Ethology, ecology, psychology, neurobiology and mainly 'causology' all have to be taken into account when dealing with a behaviour that s not acceptable to others.

Anonymous said...

Having spent all of my 58 years watching and learning from dogs,
ust how THEY interact,learn, and how THEY teach, behaviour,
One can boil it down into a simple statement.
"Ignore the bad behaviour
Reward the good."

No amount of shouting, hitting, nasty collars, leashes, will work, it just makes us humans apears fools in the eyes of a dog, and also gives those rogue dogs, the information they need to hit the right button, and get a reaction from us!
That poor dog had already learnt at an early age it had to protect ALL it valued and needed, AT ALL TIMES! Hence ALL the food guarding, home protecting, Person protecting.
That is a lot for one tiny dog's shoulders.
All it wants is some of the responsability to be taken from it.
But now it has learnt that even humans cannot be trusted, because they too can take away that which they need, by bullying, and that was ust what the poor dog experienced from its litter mates.
Now tose owners have to turn it all around, and show trust and love and belonging back to that dog, for it to feel relaxed and stress free,
Then it won't feel the need to guard and protect ANYMORE!
JackieGrimmett TheOldDogListener

TheOldDogListener said...

Having spent all of my 58 years watching and learning from dogs,
ust how THEY interact,learn, and how THEY teach, behaviour,

One can boil it down into a simple statement.

"Ignore the bad behaviour
Reward the good."

No amount of shouting, hitting, nasty collars, leashes, will work, it just makes us humans apears fools in the eyes of a dog, and also gives those rogue dogs, the information they need to hit the right button, and get a reaction from us!

That poor dog had already learnt at an early age it had to protect ALL it valued and needed, AT ALL TIMES! Hence ALL the food guarding, home protecting, Person protecting.
That is a lot for one tiny dog's shoulders.
All it wants is some of the responsability to be taken from it.
But now it has learnt that even humans cannot be trusted, because they too can take away that which they need, by bullying, and that was ust what the poor dog experienced from its litter mates.

Now those owners have to turn it all around, and show trust and love and belonging back to that dog, for it to feel relaxed and stress free,
Then it won't feel the need to guard and protect ANYMORE!

Marie Miller said...

It is extremely sad that yet another TV program has given the impression that bullying and intimidation are the primary tools required to modify problem behaviour in dogs.

Yes it is possible to bully & intimidate some dogs into submission but is this the sort of relationship that most families want with their family pet?

There was an awful lot more going on within the family/dog relationships, unpinning and reinforcing this dog's previously learned behaviour. Too much for a 'quick fix' in a 5 minute TV segment about dog training.

I hope that no members of this family or the public are injured by copying the method used by Jordan Shelley. Metaphorically, he merely put a sticking plaster over a gaping wound and left it festering. I hope the family are able to find a behaviourist or trainer very soon to help them to address Roxy's underlying problems.

JW said...

I have put in a complaint to the BBC. I was very angry, I still am. We have a Parsons who came to us with extreme problems. With Love and Patience he learned to play rather thatn fight, he appreciated meal times and gradually looked forward to human contact. It was worth the pain, he is a beautiful, clever, loving dog now. We are not trainers. We just love and respect our pets.

Frances said...

That is the BBC's press statement response!?!? So any unqualified charlatan can appear on television, present advice that runs counter to all scientific evidence, and be justified because "there are lots of different opinions"? And then spin a line about it? What the hell has happened to the BBC?

Anonymous said...

this needs to be verified but I heard Iron Mountain Dog Rescue have been involved over the weekend with an entire male Staffy whose owner tried Joirdan Shelleys foot method on their dog with cionsequences.

Vicky Welsh said...

Surely the press statement has to be a joke (after all it has been issued by the comedy department).

Anonymous said...

Having read all of your comments, from the hysterical, sensible, to the plain daft, I have come to the conclusion that 'Credible' has got it spot on.
I also think that assumptions are being made about just what Jordan did and didn't do. Look again - he did not kick the dog... My experience of the media is that they want a 'story', the more entertaining, the better it is, and they will EDIT any piece to fit time or storyline. You cannot judge anything by 5 mins airtime, because you won't have seen the other 3 hours that was cut. Jordan may well have asked all the right questions... And I think the issue here is not how the dog was sorted out, but WHY the dog was allowed to become so lethal by the ignorant owners in the first place. Roxy was a time bomb primed to go off and attack once too often - the result being put down. This is a classic case of 'cure' rather than 'prevention' and not enough dog owners have a clue about educating their dogs when they are totally uneducated themselves.


As posted to the One Show
"Your press statement is simply not good enough, very disappointing and also showing a utter disregard for animal welfare and your own audience - pathetic.

And how on earth did you manage to get it so wrong? I think your department needs "fixing"!"

I think this really incredible and very upsetting - such ignorance and so behind the times!

Natalie said...

What an absolute joke! He has admitted to being 'self taught' err, that's alright then, that makes him very qualified to deal with exceptional negative behaviour. I watched that footage with my mouth open, couldn't believe what I was seeing.

IMC said...

LOVE the response! So brilliantly patronising.

Dogs Today, get your journo noses to the phones and find out where this guy came from! I think there's a running bet it's going to be a relative or friend of someone on the show....

Frances said...

Are you serious? The Sanctuary he is involved with is a Spa, not a dog rescue? This just gets weirder and weider ...

So, all opinions now being equal, the BBC will be basing their future travel programmes on the opinions of the Flat Earth Society, and their financial advice on the beliefs of those who anticipate the Rapture any day. Who was it who said everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own facts?

Kirstin said...

I have only just seen this, I don't watch the One Show, but followed your link.

I'm not a dog trainer (my dog will vouch for that!), but I do believe I know when my dog is upset, wary or fearful. I felt that the Jack Russell on The One Show was bullied and all that it will have accomplished would be to make it wary and afraid at certain times, basically adding to what already appeared to be a fearful dog.

There is a difference between assertiveness and aggression, I felt the trainer on the show was aggressive towards the dog, on the clips seen (which I would presume were the best bits!!!), he bullied the dog into submission, the dog is probably now afraid of people's feet after being booted around the kitchen. Meaning he is sure to lash out at another time.

I can't see how he can compare his methods to Cesar Millan - who in my opinion has an empathy and understanding of dogs - this guy on the One Show I wouldn't let near my dog!

If the family were to try this with a larger dog, I can imagine someone being bitten quite badly!

I think he made the poor Jack Russell into one unhappy, afraid & confused dog. I also think he will have set some terrible examples for the family to follow!

I haven't complained to the show, but will investigate how to do it, I don't think this should be a regular feature on the show, well not with this trainer anyway!

My dog is "aggressive" towards other dogs, I see this as fear, she makes as much noise and rears up to make herself appear bigger and tougher than she is, she has never attacked another dog. I would never consider trying these methods on my dog.

nel said...

I spend money on updating my education and getting qualified. Yet the BBC employ a self taught dogtrainer!!!! would they employ a self taught health adviser to advise people how to deal with mental illness or a self taught electrician to advise people how to re-wire a house!!!!

Karen said...

To anyone who has sent a complaint or voiced concern over the episode, please contact OFCOM and the RSPCA to complain. The RSPCA are currently saying that, so far, the number of complaints received does not justify an investigation. I believe this is due to the majority complaining to The One Show or BBC. The only voice these dogs have is ours; please use it.

Karen said...

I find the press statement jaw dropping - it seems the complaints department are about as thorough as the researchers!

Methods aside (and I strongly disagree with his methods), what advice is always given to people with dogs displaying any kind of aggression problem - seek help from a QUALIFIED behavourist. I still have yet to see/hear any evidence that Shelley has any qualifications in this field at all.

Teddy McDoodle said...

I'm not a dog trainer or behaviourist but common sense tells me there's something really off about this man and his methods. I also know enough about Cesar Milan's methods on and off screen to never trust anyone who is a self-styled devotee of his. I think the BBC have made a huge - and dangerous - mistake with this and have emailed them to tell them so. I've also written on the One Show's facebook page that I will not be watching their programme in the future.

Tony said...

Very concerned by the nature of the BBC's reponse after getting so many complaints. My question is why did they choose Jordan Shelley over all the experienced and qualified dog trainers?

Debbie Buxcey said...

I have worked with and rehomed ex-racing greyhounds for 13 years. I am also a fully qualified holistic animal healer. I have come across all manner of behavioural issues from extreme nervousness to aggression and everything in between.

Whilst I do not profess to be an expert in every dog breed, I know greyhounds and I know how to get the best out of a dog.

Jordan Shelley's techniques are dangerous, threatening and will encourage everyone to "give it a go", which will subsequently end up with far more people being bitten and far more dogs either being pts for aggression or given up for rehoming.

I am disgusted the BBC feel they can continue with this section of the show. If they feel have a "dog behaviourist" is a worthwhile segment, then I wish they would bring in someone who is actually qualified, registered with an appropriate body and who doesn't think that Cesar Milan is the best thing since sliced bread.

Debbie Buxcey BSYA (Animal Heal)
Greyhounds for You Founder

Suzanne said...

have sent a complaint, disgraceful that the one show thinks its responsible to air this, every dog is different and to advocate this type of training across the board is disgraceful ,can see many amateur dog "trainers "treating their dogs this wway !

Queenie said...

These cruel methods of 'training' went out before Jordan was even born !
And anyone watching the show and thinking they can do that with their own dog will get badly bitten! Years ago I had a rescue that had been bullied by methods like this and he appeared to be a cowering wreck, until one day I lifted his bowl, thinking he'd finished eating.
Eight stitches in my hand proved that the dog had not been 'cured' of food aggression . Worse, he gave no warning whatsoever, went straight for the bite. Suppose I had been a young child...

Tracy said...

I am just a dog owner, no special training. I saw Roxy as insecure and for whatever reason, needing to guard her most precious resources (her food and that young woman). When Jordan was 'training' her I saw stress behaviour (cowed, panting) and a very confused little dog. My dog used to guard his bowl, not as seriously as Roxy, but still guarding. I did the 'drop a bit of food in the bowl' thing and now he will let me take anything off him because he knows I am not a threat, I love him, and he will get something nice as a reward. It built our relationship rather than damaged it. God help anyone who tries this on a stronger dog, as they will have no feet left. The BBC should be ashamed of themselves. Surely they have 'experts' and researchers who could advise them how to do this better. They are just going for the cheap drama aspect. RIP all the poor dogs who will end up being pts as a result of owners trying this technique on them. God bless all the rescue charity workers who must now be bracing themselves for an onslaught of yet more unwanted dogs.

Anonymous said...

BBC, the 500 people who have contacted the One Show asking for Jordan's help are really asking for help with their dog's behaviour - they are not necessarily asking for him. They have seen a 'quick fix' and that's what they want. Unfortunately there are no quick fixes with dogs. They are intelligent animals who need time, patience, love and hard work. Sadly, as we can get quick fixes wherever we like these days - ordering takeaway, downloading music etc - people seem to apply the same to dogs. You must develop a relationship with your dog. He needs you. There are so many dogs in rescue - rescue's are literally bursting and are putting dogs down because they have no space to take in dogs from those who wish to get rid of them quickly, rather than understanding how wonderful a dog can be and how much time you must put in with your dog. I have no qualifications, I simply love my dog. We have got to work together to make people understand a dog is a committment. As Dogs Trust said, a dog is for life not just for Christmas. The same applies to all areas of dog ownership. It is reckless to allow Jordan to display these methods at all, but parlicularly as no background was given. Had Roxy been vet checked? The One Show is hugely influential and before this, I would have taken what was on as well-researched and authoritative. Sadly many will do the same with the methods shown. Please listen and understand dogs are not a 'fun' feature for tv or just a great headline, they are wonderful animals who deserve our respect and care. I was sad to read of the Staffy in the post a few above. I hope someone will give him proper time and care.

Cindy's blog master said...

Innit somewhat sad that so many dog owners have no idea of what to do or where to turn when their dog(s) does show up problems that they feel like that have to sit and wait in front of the telly and wait for it to resolve their problems??

DogPsyche said...

I think we need to form some kind of coalition much along the same lines as that against CM last year...

The BBC MUST MUST MUST be made to understand that they CANNOT go against a wave of feeling of this magnitude from professionals and dog owners alike; and of course the licence fee payers!

~Jaq Bunn~ DogPsyche UK
(BTEC HNC in Canine Behaviour and Training, final module of Advanced Diploma in Canine Behavioural Management. Canine Behaviour Consultant for the past 11 years, Dog Trainer/owner before this for 30 years.)

Jann Grant said...

I have also complained to the BBC, OFCOM and The One Show FB page. I watched this self taught, CM wannabe bullying a JRT into fearful shut down with tears in my eyes. I'm disgusted by the press release after most of the complaints i have seen have come from QUALIFIED behaviourists/trainers, who know what they are talking about. One of my dogs used to food guard, she would snarl and snap if you went anywhere near her; it took time, love & a lot of patience,and throwing treats into her food bowl, but now i can walk past her no problem while she's eating.
To be honest,if you gave me a bowl of food and then took it away,i would bite you too!! As regard to the dog ripping up a letter box cage, no more torn letters.
I really hope this segment is pulled from the show before somebody gets seriously injured, and a misunderstood dog at best gets put into rescue, or at worse PTS

Eileen B said...

I put on my wellies and followed Jordan's method. I 'cured' him. The following day I put food down for my dog and had to flee from the room after being bitten twice! He's only a little Westie but bit above the wellies, so God knows what would have happened with a bigger dog!
His food aggression is worse than ever in an otherwise lovely dog!

Eileen B said...

Yesterday, I put on my wellies and followed Jordan's method to cure my dog. Tonight I put his food in the bowl and now have 2 big bites on my knees above where the wellies would have come to! My dog is a little Westie so God knows what would have happened with a bigger dog! The problem is obviously worse than ever now in an otherwise lovely 9 month old puppy. Sad.

Morgane said...

I wouldn't call myself a dog trainer but I do train my own dog and have advised others with problem-solving methods.. I'm completely disgusted that the BBC is pretty much ignoring all the protests that have gone against Jordan Shelley and thinking they can answer them just with "dog lovers have strong opinions on the subject of dog training". Have they not read the opinions of professional dog trainers. I feel sick that they are so unresponsive. Everyone makes mistakes (like hiring a crappy dog trainer) but learning from them (hiring a good dog trainer) is so important.

The dog was so terrified that they weren't even able to film her physically eating.. I didn't see it happen anyway. The dog was unhappy to start off with and is now even more unhappy. The situation has been blanketed by a layer of ignorance. I am so angry!

Ems said...

As yet no formal qualifications (working towards COAPE on hold as I have recently been quite ill)- 15 years experience owning dogs, rescuing dogs, fostering dogs and reading everything I can get my hands on from L David Mech to Victoria Stilwell and everything in between.

Currently moderator and adviser on forums and am a Expert Blogger alongsides the likes of Ian Dunbar and Sophia Yin.

I would absolutely NOT have addressed this dog (or ANY dogs) resource guarding and fear aggressive behaviour using dominance/punishment based tactics.

I would have desentized her to people near bowls by using the 'three bowl trick', empty bowls set round a room and you walk around dropping ONE piece of food in each one. Gradually build that up, alongside other techniques such as clicker training her to improve the bond between dog and owner, until she can handle several bits of food in each bowl, being hand fed, being called away from bowls to receive a reward from the handler etc etc.

At NO point did 'challenging' the dog need to come into it, nor setting the dog up to fail by giving her food inviting her to take the food then attempting to take it away.

It was needless, pointless, dangerous, and the length of time it took confusing and frightening the animal was cruel and unnecessary.

RosieTaylor-Trigg said...

As it's mentioned above to mention any trainers we feel would be obvious choices to speak from the other side to Shelley, I would recommend Steve Mann as the trainer to speak from an alternate perspective to Shelleys. He trains future trainers, has over 20 years experience and is an APDT member.

April said...

Im 17 years old, have 3 dogs and have been training for 5 years. 2 of my dogs are aggressive, 1 sometimes around food when other dogs go near it. How did I solve the problem? I hand feel all her dinner. She gets everything through me. And she loves it, she loves working for her food.

I find this segment shocking. Im self-taught, and ive made HUGE mistakes and am still making them. Ive done lots of research though, and with 2 aggressive dogs am always learning. Ive seen dominance methods used. Ive seen the damage, one of my dogs was a rescue and before she came to me was used dominance methods on her. She was pinned to the ground, squirted water, stupid collars. The result? She came to me with no trust, petrified of other dogs, scared of anyone stealing her food and nervous of people. Who can blame her? A year on and shes a different dog. Why? I used positive methods on her and taught her there was nothing to be scared of anymore. None of those stupid bullying methods.

Ive used those methods in the past, okay not as extreme but Ive seen the damage. That dog is set up for a life of fear. It was scared of eating his own dinner, how is that acceptable?

Im so glad there is such a wide community of people who agree. Ive only been training for 5 years, no qualifications but enough research to know what I need to know. That man is a bully and clearly has no clue.

Anonymous said...

Eileen B,
Thank-you for your post, and it was not your fault, the BBC didn't give any warnings - despite qualified dog behaviourist knowing there are scientific papers proving the dangers.
I'm reckon you might even be able to find a no-money-no-fee lawyer who would be willing to sue the BBC for the consequences of their bad advice.
Also I'm sure the RSPCA or the APBC (googled them and email address is would love to hear from you as a specific example of why the methods used are dangerous.

I'm just relieved it wasn't a big powerful dog, and that there were no children nearby!

Anonymous said...

Eileen B,

Also, I'm sure the APBC would just love to demonstrate on the one show the correct way of helping your dog to get over problems in a positive and non-confrontational way.

Celfyddydau said...

I am a member of the APDT UK, INTODogs, PDTE and The Pet Care Trust. I have studied under Sarah Whitehead and am doing a level 5 FD in Canine Behaviour.

I had my appendix removed about 10 years ago and am therefore qualified to do appendectamies, although my first aid certificate ran out 3 weeks ago I see no problem with this. I can use a hammer and would be more than happy to build a house for anyone who wants one. I am a self taught beautician as I used to play with my Girls World as a child and have watched Gok Wan on the telly.

The APDT UK and INTODogs have both sent statements to the BBC. I also know that COAPE are doing so. I believe that the animal professionals who have links to the show are also going to make thier feeling known.

I find it insane that following all the complaints, the BBC are happy to keep showing this type of training and that they are basically ignoring the other 3 quadrants of of operant conditioning, that they don't recognise the difference between possitive punishment and punitive punishment.

When I am doing one to one behaviour counselling the owners are told at the outset that it is an 8 month programme with full support throughout and that I will not be attending for 3/4 hours and their dog will be fixed. If I have anyone demanding a quick fix and the dog needs to be cured now I let them know that quick fixes are just plasters and the behaviour will raise again, explaining with the analogy of putting money in a vending machine and if it fails to give the product, people will thump the machine, getting more and more frustrated and violent without getting any results. Dogs do the same when something they have always used and has always worked they will try harder and more frequently. This is called Extintion Explosion and is recognised by qualified trainers.

I am expecting this dog to show other behaviour problems in the future and I would not be suprised if someone was bitten by this dog.

Beth Burton said...

I fee that the whole thing could have been done a lot better the food guarding & the way it was dealt with was dreadful. As for the bedroom bit that was the girls fault because once she knew that the dog was doing this she should have stopped allowing the dog on her bed. When the dog was attacking the post it wasn't because of something like a rabbit popping out of a hole it was because something was invading it's territory a basket over the letter box would save the post.

Fiona Whelan said...

All of these comments are great & so many of you have nailed it. I too have complained, shared pages etc but THE BIGGEST THING WE CAN ALL ACTUALLY DO IS MAKE SURE OUR TV'S ARE SWITCHED OFF THE NEXT TIME THE ONE SHOW IS AIRED. Please DO NOT switch on next week to see what he does next, SWITCH OFF. Reduction of viewing figures is more powerful than any complaints, in the world of media, there is no bad publicity! If you want to be twice as effective then email the One Show to say that you are switching off because of this slot!

Anonymous said...

Can I nominate Steve Mann as the trainer for the One Show. Steve is no stranger to television cameras having worked twice on The Underdog Show and also on BBC's Breakfast. He is a very positive trainer, understands behaviour and doesn't patronise or preach.

Sue said...

Oh dear, even the Daily Mail aren't impressed...

Anonymous said...

The owners have probably caused these problems in their little dog, and the poor dog pays the price for it, by being treated in this bullying fashion. Even Barbara Woodhouse never used such barbaric methods.

Anonymous said...

One question to everyone......

If you saw someone doing what Jordan Shelley was doing to Roxy, in the street, would you say "oh look there's someone training their dog", or would you say "oh look there is someone being cruel and abusing that dog"?

Cazzh said...

I used to love teaching people how to train their dogs and also helping people with their problem dogs. I am so sad to see the step backward on UK TV by showcasing someone who uses such negative methods. I hope for the day when there will be a proper, knowledgeable, humane trainer on prime time TV to show people how to train and deal with their dogs in a non-confrontational and kinder way. I can no longer do what I used to do and it pains me to see dog training and problem solving take such HUGE steps back like this! I fear the only reason this man is on the One Show is nepotism - that he probably knows someone to do with it? Just a wild guess of course. That's the way these things normally work.
I do not envy present day trainers in sorting out the problems that this type of dog handling causes.

Amy Hyde said...

this dog was leading an incredibly stressful life, resource guarding. He definately needed help in stopping this behaviour, however surely the help should have been postive so that he wanted to do it? where was the praise when the dog did right? I would not have gone straight into the food based guarding but had the dog in a neutral place and taught it, in a reward based way, the leave command, the back command, the wait etc. that way when the bowl was introduced...which initially would have been empty...the little jack would have already known some of what was going to be expected of him. In this clip the dog was too tired and to scared to eat at the end.He should have been a proud dog not an exhausted dog. In my experience dogs love to work, especially those bred to do so, why was this need to work not utilised? you could have had a very happy jack. anyone trying these methods at home are going to be in serious trouble I fear :(

Katie Scott-Dyer said...

Dear Beverly
Please help us remove this uneducated and unregulated pretty boy from our TV before he ruins any more dogs and families lives.
Suppressing and forcing a dog by bullying it are not the way to modify it's behaviour and I for one do not find kicking a dog in the face entertaining.
I realise many will see the clip and think the dog was fixed and believe they can either emulate or hire this cowboy. I realise the CM fans will welcome Jordan with open arms. So what's the point in me educating myself and joining
professional organisations to prove I am suitable to modify a clients dog behaviour when clearly anyone can do it?
The sad fact remains that the BBC intend to continue to pay Jordan and air his Fix my Dog nonsense and I dread the repercussions this has upon the profession and for the families whose dogs are 'fixed' by him.

Katie Scott-Dyer
Sadly it appears

Anonymous said...

I`m disgusted at the BBC promoting this Dog Whisperer "wannabe". His methods are totally medieval and harmful to the poor dog on the receiving end.
Showing the brutal methods of this so called "expert" is counter productive to all the hard work in the field of Canine Behaviour and risks the possibilty of setting that progress back decades, when showing this on prime time television.
Imagine trying to stick your boot in the face of a large Rottweiler or German Shepard!!
I suspect we will hear of casualties before long, resulting in the poor animals no doubt being pts and also more cowboys jumping on the bandwagon and becoming overnight "Experts"..

BBC, you have lost my viewing time as i am disgusted you seem to think this is perfectly acceptable behaviour. Shows how much research you conduct into canine behaviour..

Harrjak said...

i thought his methods were all wrong, yes he looked pretty, but that was as far as it went for me!!! the poor little jack looked so scared, some shots show her very reluctant to eat, well so would i be after having a foot shoved at me everytime i did so!!
the bbc have shown that bullying your dog into submission, and no doubt having lots edited out, works :( very very wrong, imagine a family with a large gsd ( for example) having similar guarding issues, and trying this approach... people WILL try this at home without any thought to repurcussions, as it was shown on tv to work!
i also thought the trembling and shaking of the so called relaxed dog wasnt so great in the studio either...

Anonymous said...

I have to say I agree with Jordan shelley that when dealing with a problem you should look at all technique, with dog and owner as alot of the time it is how the owner is treating the dog.
Was wondering if we all mist the point abit though as this dog was being aggressive to it's owners and had the potenial to bite, which is not the correct behaviour.
I think we have got abit precious about our dogs, I love mine dearly but am aware they ARE dogs, not humans and we do seem to try and humanise dogs and wrap them in cotton wool these days.What is this years craze will be out next year and something else will be in.
We should perhaps be focusing on what is cruel like puppy farms and the amount of dogs in rehoming centres as their owners cannot cope with them due to behavioural problems.
If it works and stops a dog biting and being put down or being rehomed by using a blocking technique then I am happy.

Robert Alleyne said...

As one of the trainers from Dog Borstal, many of you will know that I don't have a problem with the use of punishment in theory. One the contrary, it is often necessary. However, punishment should only be used to reinforce the positive training that was done prior to the punisher. Every dog I train with has been taught using rewards, but I will use a punisher to reinforce that training if and when necessary. I doubt that there is a single trainer or behaviourist on this noticeboard that if they were completely honest, doesn't routinely use some form of punishment - although they will call it something else, such as an aversive or coersive. Why do we never see these 'purely positive' trainers putting themselves forward for telly shows? Because they know that they are likely to have to use some form of punishment at some point, and be exposed as frauds.

Having said all that, the work done by Jordan Shelley wasn't dog training. Nor was it bullying. Nor was it cruel. But it was nonetheless FUNDAMENTALLY WRONG! When the dog attacked him, he simply stood his ground, and sometimes moved into the attack. So he wasn't actually cruel. But how frightened must that poor dog have been? To show that on television to pet owners as a technique is extremely dangerous, and NO ONE who saw this should try it on their own dog.

In fact, we never actually saw any real training of the dog. All he did was teach the dog that the level of aggression that was currently sufficient no longer works. So what may happen is that the dog puts aggression on hold while it thinks about what to do next. If the owners are very lucky the aggression may never come back. However, the likelihood is that aggression will return - and with a vengeance. The sad thing then is that the owners then often give up, decide that the dog cannot be trained and put the dog to sleep. That death should be on Jordan Shelley's conscience. He clearly doesn't have the knowledge to substantiate his claim to be a dog trainer, or a dog whisperer (if there is such a thing), or a behaviourist.
Robert Alleyne

Sally Rowe said...

It is appalling that people still think these methods are the ones to use, and even worse that they are being portrayed on TV to members of the public.

Would anyone kick their child repeatedly in the mouth to stop them protecting their food? All this dog has learned is that people are unfair (fairness is a huge part of actual dominance to a dog), that they might steal your food or stop your fun, and that biting their feet doesn't work (so if you really feel the need to bite them- you'll have to try somewhere else!)

Sally Rowe
1st class BSc (Hons) Applied Animal Behaviour and Training
Trainer for online video magazine

Ems said...

Interesting to see your opinion Rob - whilst I disagree with you on some points it IS good to see that you agree that Jordan Shelleys method of 'training' was wrong.

To address the point on 'purely positive' - I can't recall anyone claiming to be PURELY positive, do give me some examples if you know of any.
I would call myself a 'postive' trainer though I would actually prefer 'holistic' if it didn't have such fluffy hippyish connotations.
There ARE consequences and there ARE punishments in what I do, but these take the form of negative punishment, the removal of an expected reward, such as time outs on the whole. (And yes there ARE ways of implementing a 'time out' in a variety of contexts, you dont HAVE to be indoors to do that).

I find positive training to be ONLY limited by the trainers imagination, though I suppose it would be rude of me to suggest that some trainers lack the imagination to get the best from it.

The problem I think with showing positive training on tv (and yes, I would HAPPILY do that, as do other people, most notably these days Victoria Stilwell and Zak George) is that program MAKERS do not think the general public would find it as exciting as showing people pinning snarling snappy dogs to the ground, or people shaking rattle-bottles in their faces. It just doesn't make such gripping tv, though I am sure it COULD if someone bothered to try it!

Sheila Mac said...

Statement from Kennel Club:-

Steve Mann said...

Hi Robert

In response to your comment:-

I trained Chump on BBCs The Underdog Show.

I am a positive Trainer.

I put myself forward for the TV. (and always will, I've an ego the size of a house!)

I used no positive punishment. (and never will, no need)

Surely rewards (R +) reinforce positive training, not punishment (P +) if done properly?

Anyway, i'm sure we both have the dog's best interest at heart.

Maybe we should do a show, you V me, may the best methods win!


Steve Mann

Anonymous said...

I have complained to the BBC as I was appalled that this mans so called 'training'techniques were shown on a tv program at 7pm - an accident waiting to happen!! Will the BBC be resposnible when a child tries out Mr Shelley's methods and is seriously mauled?! Not to mention the unnecessary stress and bullying caused to the dog.

Sarah said...

I'm not a dog trainer, but I do have a dog. I would be horrified if anyone tried these techniques on my dog. I have trained him using praise and rewards - I am disgusted that the BBC showed this brutal technique and therefore, by association, condoned it. I have signed the petition & complained to the BBC.

Tc said...

Of course the dog was scared. It was guarding right?! If the dog was not scared or fearful it would not feel the need to guard.
So when Jordon 'moved into the attack', what was he teaching the dog? To feel more secure or to be more scared? Should a trainer be punishing that fear? Fear is a strong emotion.
Perhaps building up some confidence and security may be the best approach.

Personal Pet Services said...

I've been running a dog walking/pet sitting service with elements of dog training for the past 2 years in Poole in Dorset, I've worked closley with Steve Mann in Herts and also read many guides and opinions on dog trainings, all of which lead to the reward based style being the most effective and worth while for both the family and the pet. I have shown this clip to my staff today also and all are disgusted! If we were to treat any of the dogs in our care in such a way and try to palm it off to the owners as 'training' we would have our reputation in shatters, that is if we weren't already in pieces from having our feet bitten off! The dog looked in fear towards the end of the kitchen clip. I would have expected much more from the BBC and hope that Steve Mann gets the chance to shine on this show. His training methods are both fun for the trainer and the dog!!

Barneys Blog Spot said...

Hi Beverley

I have to agree with the comments of my good friends and colleagues that have already posted here. Please help us get rid of the pretty boy and his out dated methods. We work hard to advocate animal welfare through owner education and in some cases working with a dog and their owner for years and all that hard work has been undone with a 20 minute slot on prime time TV.

I have yet to talk to anyone in the industry who has ever heard of this guy yet here he is on national TV advising people on behaviour problems. We work hard to gain qualifications and to gain acceptance into recognised bodies to give us credibility with our clients and their veterinarians yet it seems credibility can be gained just by appearing on the TV with no knowledge of canine psychology or training. The sooner this guy is gone the sooner we can start dealing with the fallout this type of show always generates.

Mike Jones

Anonymous said...

There is an fascinating - though as yet unconfirmed - track building that may explain how young Jordan got this gig. Brian Klein, a television director with credits including Top Gear etc, is also a Company Director of Wobbly Dog Productions (amongst several other production companies) - and a Jordan Shelley became a Director of Wobbly Dog Productions last year. It could, of course, be the purest coincidence - and Wobbly Dog seems to be more about opera than dogs! - but it might be interesting to dig a little deeper!

John Rogerson said...

This all sounds suspiciously like something I would have done in the name of dog training back in the mid sixties. Fortunately I was not given the opportunity to influence thousands of dog owners on TV. I was only exposed to a few dozen dog owners at the local village hall. After getting many of them bitten by using these 'techniques' I gave them up in favour of techniques that created a better understanding and trust between dogs and owners. Have we just suddenly just time warped back 50 years??
John Rogerson KCAI (your dog it's development. behaviour and training: Understanding your dog; training your dog; Be your dogs best friend: training your best friend, the instructors manual; In tune with your dog: the dog vinci code)

Robert Alleyne said...

Ems and Steve,

Positive training is one of my favourite subjects, and I would love to chat about it. Try googling purely positive Ems. I think it important to keep this forum on-track, so I don't think we should discuss it here, but by all means email me and we can have a fascinating discussion.

Border Collie Trust GB said...

Border Collie Trust G.B

We've seen a lot of activity on FB, Twitter and the internet in general conccerning last Fridays The One Show and Jordan Shelley. Statements and press releases have been made by all the major Dog Welfare organisations, including The Association Of Dogs and Cats Homes of which BCT are members.

Having seen the result over many years of this type of "training" with sensitive and fearful collies we know from bitter experience of the results that all too often happen and we are often called for help when these methods have failed or led to other behavioural issues.

We would implore any collie and any dog owner who is facing difficulties with behaviours to consider the long term effects of any training or behavioural work and seek advice from those who promote reward based training with a proper assessment of the dog and its history beforehand.

Quick fixes are, we believe, anything but.

Steven Havers said...

Understanding how dogs think and learn is essential if you are to be a dog trainer so study Pavlov to understand conditional and unconditional responses. From there you need to understand operant conditioning so you can teach a dog to choose a behaviour and to solve problems. Then you can be a dog trainer. However, to understand the dog/human relationship, you need to understand your dog needs you to be an example of behaviour, they need you to reward calm and relaxed behaviour with your love and affection. If your dog does not understand what you want, they will take on more and more extreme behaviours that are guaranteed to get your attention and so they get your interaction. Because your dog is desperately asking for help, it means you, the owner, has caused the problem and an ignorant and bullying approach is so not the answer. Success comes from understanding, not intimidation.
The most aggressive dog behaviour can be retrained without using fear, force, commands, food or toys. It can be changed by changing the behaviours the owners react to so changing the point of attention. Takes a little time and patience but it works and no one gets hurt or bitten.

Steven Havers
Dog/Human Relationship Expert

Anonymous said...

Would all these "Trainers" be quite so up in arms if this story had been that the jack russel had savaged a young child, would they of been quite so vocal of the "harm" such training in their view would do to the dog? Anyone who had seen the clips could see that the dog could not be trusted by its owners, and they took the help of a person who offered it.

Julie Moss said...

Maybe people who object to this trainer need to contact their local vets and let them know. They are the people who see these cases after they have gone horribly wrong but they do not themselves always know good training methods from bad. Also they are often the people who give advice (sometimes badly) to clients or refer them to a behaviourist. Let them know how we all feel and make sure they think carefully next time they are in a position to advise people or refer. Help them to help the public and their dogs by raising their awareness about this issue.

Matron said...

That poor little JRT was clearly very fearful. This idiot's interaction has only made him more so. As a COAPE qualified pet behaviourist I add my comments to the many thousands of others. Shame on the BBC

Anonymous said...

Just seen comment from Anon - Really cements the idea of not being what you know but who you know!

Karen said...

Anonymous (why are the few who are supporting this man all remaining anonymous?), you are missing the point. The reason that people are up in arms is that the methods used by Jordan Shelley could well escalate a dog's aggression so that it DOES savage a child. There are other methods that could be used that would not create that risk.

Frances said...

"Anonymous said...

Would all these "Trainers" be quite so up in arms if this story had been that the jack russel had savaged a young child, would they of been quite so vocal of the "harm" such training in their view would do to the dog? Anyone who had seen the clips could see that the dog could not be trusted by its owners, and they took the help of a person who offered it."

Anon - this is precisely WHY all these trainers are up in arms - the methods advocated have a track record of greatly increasing the risk of a dog biting, and children are at especial risk. There is already one case of owners imitating Mr Shelley, their grandchild being bitten, and the dog euthanised. These methods are dangerous, and the BBC is utterly irresponsible to push a green, unqualified, self taught young man onto television screens to demonstrate them. Jordan Shelley is clearly too young and too ignorant to know better - the One Show programme researchers and producers who have billed him as an "expert" must take much of the responsibility.

Bananav18 said...

I watched the clip on iplayer and I actually feel more annoyed with whoever recruited Jordan and put him in that position on prime time tv. Poor training skills apart, what I saw was an inexperienced young man, who has very naively grasped the opportunity to be on tv as a 'dog expert'. He was nervous, his knowledge was at a poor level and to actually have the film footage aired sits fair and square at the door of the production team.
Jordan doesn't know any better at the moment, as I didn't early on.
I hope someone in the industry offers him the opportunity to see different techniques. He needs to broaden his knowledge and be guided towards some way of improving.
Unfortunately, deep down I feel the truth of the matter is, Jordan simply wanted to be on tv and his interest in training dogs comes second.

Steve Bishop, Cert.DT said...

It frustrates me to no end, the people who comment "there's two ways of doing things," or "my way is not the only way." There's a saying in the dog training industry (of which I am a member) that the only thing two trainers can agree on is that the third one is doing it wrong. I don't agree 100% with the trainers I admire most, but we do base our methods on the current science and research and our interpretation of it.

Saying dominance training is just another method is like a paleontologist saying a dinosaur skull is a dragon, it's outdated, plain and simple.

Anonymous said...

If the comment about him being involved in wobbley dog productions is correct then Jordan Shelley is the son of the late property agent Trevor Shelley
and was previously involved in a company with his father. Of course it may be a differnt man all together.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Dogs Today for your work for dog welfare. I have complained on The One Show Facebook page (scroll down till he is mentioned), I have complained to the BBC, and I have complained to Ofcom under Section 2 , as I believe this technique is liable to cause injury to humans.
Also signed Facebook petition and the two Facebook pages. If we ALL do this, maybe we can stop this young man brutalising dogs.

Anonymous said...

Wobbly Dog Productions Limited,
(Company house) website that was taken down had links to previous businesses, jordans cleaners etc.

Of course this might be a different Jordan Shelley..

Perhaps Dom from the one show could investigate !!!

Tracy said...

Oh Beverley, I have just read about that dog being put to sleep after the child was bitten and it is so, so distressing, I am in tears. Of course this is what every sane person predicted would happen. How can we stop this? It is nightmarish. I think I am going to write to my local paper about this - lots of people read the letters page and hopefully it will stop some other poor children and dogs being traumatised. Why aren't the BBC apologising and trying a damage limitation exercise?

Anonymous said...

I wonder how many of handful of people supporting him are also alumni of Shiplake College, Henley?

Like Bananav18, I feel the production team who capitalised on his youth and starry eyes are the most to blame. I cannot decide which is more frightening - that they researched the field, recognised his lack of experience and qualifications, and decided to go ahead anyway, or that they are so immersed in the world of marketing, image and spin that they genuinely cannot tell the difference between substance and presentation. "All fur coat and no knickers", as my grandmother used to say.

Anonymous said...

Interesting views from a "dog behaviour specialist" named Jordan Shelley on a BBC blog last year - "no dog is born aggressive. Dogs only become aggressive when they are abused and trained to be aggressive or through neglectful owners who do not excercise or discipline their dogs. Remember owning a dog takes time, effort and patience and a handler that is calm, consistent and in control."

Comment number 41 -

Em said...

Been thinking long and hard about whether I'm at all qualified to comment, whether I have a right to be angry, whether my voice has a right to be heard. And then I look at my two Jacks (as seen in the mag with me in March 2011) and I think back to when I started trying to groom Brac.

The first couple of times I held a brush up to him, he bit it and was obviously scared. SO my partner and I took our time getting him used to us touching him all over without a brush. Then, one sunny Spring day, I took him outside with a brush, some treats and a clicker. It took half an hour of gentle, calm, positive work to allow me to brush him all over. Obviously it took further sessions for him to relax even more and start enjoying it, but you get my drift.
Terriers are notoriously challenging (but hugely rewarding) dogs to own. They are intelligent and if left to their own devices they will make up their own rules. They don't instinctively trust their owners, so you have to be really careful to keep everything consistent... I honestly think Jordan has done more damage than good by using such negative techniques on that poor dog.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if it was child behaviour problems, rather than a dog problem, would the BBC be quite so keen on employing a self taught, unquallified 'specialist'?

Funny isn't it, that they wouldn't dream of letting anyone unqualified near a naughty child, but for an aggressive dog it's perfectly acceptable.

I'm not a dog trainer or behaviourist, but I am qualified in the job that I do. I have also employed a behaviourist for help with my rescued dogs, and although they weren't aggressive, I think that if they had treated my dogs as he treated that poor JR, I'd have marched them from my home.

I hope the family & the JR can find some proper training, before it's too late.

Rachel Worley, Pet Dog Behaviour Advisor said...

A far safer method that would help produce lasting effects would be to use multiple feeding bowls, little and often. With the dogs daily quota of food split into say, 5 portions to be fed throughout the day, each portion would then be divided between half a dozen identical food bowls. At feeding times, all 6 bowls would be put down a few feet away from each other for the dog to move between. When the dog begins to eat from bowl 1, the behavioural advisor, (to be replaced by dog owner following sufficient demonstrations and discussion about the dog's entire rank reduction program), would drop some extra tasty morsels of food like chicken, sausage, cheese or whatever food the dog would have a strong desire for that is proven to not cause any adverse reaction, into bowl 2. The dog will undoubtedly leave bowl 1 and begin to eat from bowl 2. At this point the individual would drop some tasty pieces into bowl 3. The dog will then move from bowl 2 and begin to eat from bowl 3 etc etc. In this way, the dog will gradually learn that the presence of a person near it's bowl at feeding time is positive and actually something to be welcomed. Over time, the dog's mindset will adjust though a severely food aggressive dog will never be able to return to eating from one bowl...but hey, who cares? Nobody will get bitten, the dog won't be euthanised, the relationship between dog and owner will be significantly improved and the dog will actually learn something rather than be left in a volatile state of conflict!

Rebecca Leonardi said...

After making complaints to the BBC and Ofcom, I just realised I didn't post anything here. So incase this also makes a difference, I include the complaint I made below:

I am appalled at Jordan Shelley’s attempts to ‘train’ (!) the aggressive terrier on the One Show. The behaviour shown cannot be ‘fixed’ by a few minutes of physical confrontation with the dog. Temporarily suppressing aggressive behaviour using a combination of physical force and fear may appear to be a quick fix to the uneducated eye, but will merely result in the dog being more fearful and aggressive in the future - yet too afraid to give any warning signals before it bites. The BBC are advocating methods which greatly increase the likelihood that people will be injured by their dogs – the so called ‘training’ is an incredibly dangerous approach to take. Would the BBC encourage people to drink alcohol and drive? This situation is no different. What will it take before the BBC realise their responsibility for the injuries caused to people, dogs abused, and dogs relinquished or put to sleep, all as a result of this awful demonstration on the One Show?

I ask the BBC - is seeing a dog cowering and stressed good television? Perhaps those in the entertainment industry believe a reward based training method does not have the same dramatic impact as bullying and intimidation, but at least the BBC would be demonstrating a responsible approach to training dogs, and not therefore running the risk of abuse to animals plus someone being mauled and seriously injured by their own dog, as they try to emulate the confrontational approach shown by this show.

It is incredibly irresponsible for the BBC to describe Jordan Shelley as an expert. He is clearly NOT an expert of any shape or form. Why did the BBC not consider contacting the APBC (Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors) or APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers)? They are the governing bodies in the UK, whose members are reputable, qualified Dog Behaviourists and Dog Trainers. I am a registered member of the APDT, and work with Dogs Trust - no doubt we will have many cases of dogs being relinquished once owners have tried out these ‘Quick Fix’ tactics at home. Like the vast majority of dog trainers in the UK, I work very hard to educate young people about dog behaviour, demonstrating kind, fair and EFFECTIVE training methods and could not be more angry and distressed at the methods advocated for use on this show.

Mary Beth said...

I have seen Cesar Milan handle food guarding, and he did not use this method! Nothing close. I'm pretty sure he did hand-feeding, but regardless it was nothing like this.

Anonymous said...

The spot on the One Show is perfect for Steve Mann.
Entertaining, fun AND a brilliant Dog Trainer / Behaviourist.
Having completed some of his Dog Trainer Seminars I know he will promote the right way to train dogs

RSPCA Mcr & Salford & Perfect Paws Manchester said...

Dear BBC,

I am writing on behalf of the trustees of the RSPCA Manchester & Salford Branch to highlight my concern and distress after watching The One Show this week. There was a section with a 'dog behaviourist' called Jordan aired this week that has provoked an influx of complaints to our branch from members of the public, volunteers and trustees alike. The clip in questions can be found below, roughly 31 minutes in:

The use of 'dominance theory' to train dogs is highly controversial, with most leading dog charities (including the Dogs Trust and RSPCA) and scientists now completely dismiss this theory altogether.

Dominance theory (or using force, aggression etc) to train dogs is based on the idea that dogs behave as wolves. There is now overwhelming evidence that this is not the case. In fact one of the world's leading dog experts, John Bradshaw has recently released his book 'In Defence of Dogs' that dismisses these techniques favouring positive reinforcement.

As seen in the clip above, Jordan did see results to his aggressive techniques, however the dog is visibly distressed, tail down and nervous. This type of training often does have quick results (as the dog now fears the human) but in the long run this often leads to an acceleration of aggression to the point where dogs bite and have to be euthanized.

The fact these techniques were aired on a popular family programme at prime time is highly frustrating to animal charities such as ours. We spend our time picking up the pieces when dogs have bitten or are in need of intensive rehabilitation due to being dangerously nervous when members of the public have tried to replicate these techniques.

Jordan's 'hero' Cesar Milan has no academic qualifications and has been criticized regularly for the use of electric shock collars (now banned in Wales), choke chains and the use of force when training dogs.

Although we fully appreciate the popularity of Cesar Milan and his methods we do not support them. We believe the BBC should have acted more responsibly in this instance and liaised with a respected dog charity or qualified scientist such as John Bradshaw. Mr Bradshaw is an advisor for the RSPCA and Dogs Trust having spent 25 years researching dog behaviour.

Up and down the country people (and children as in the clip) will be trying these dangerous methods without any professional assistance. Fear aggression is extremely unpredictable and dangerous and not to be dealt with by unqualified adults let alone children.

We would ask the BBC to remove Jordan's segment from the One Show immediately before any incidents occur. However, we believe the damage may have already been done by reinforcing and justifying this old fashion method of training to many people across the UK.


Hannah Brookfield
RSPCA Manchester & Salford Chair of Trustees & Perfect Paws Manchester Dog Training