My Feral Litter featuring Simon, Alvin, Theodore and Amelia

In 2001 a feral mother cat wandered onto my property. I trapped her, two weeks later she gave birth on May 5th. The feral mother raised her 4 kittens in my second bath. After weaning the kittens, the feral mother was tested, negative, neutered and released. Theodore was adopted first, then Amelia, finally Alvin, the shy one. I kept Simon. I had to humanely euthanize him in June 2006, he had been diagnosed with FIP about 15 months earlier. Thanks to Audrey at previously called "Alley Cat Rescue" located in Bradenton Florida and my vet at that time who happened also work with Audrey.

Anthropomorphism, Double-Edged Sword

Why understanding this is useful in applications of companion behavior modification and training! The difference in mind between man and the higher animals, great as it is, certainly is one of degree and not of kind. We have seen that the senses and intuitions, the various emotions and faculties, such as love, memory, attention, curiosity, imitation, reason, etc., of which man boasts, may be found in an incipient, or even sometimes in a well-developed condition, in the lower animals.

Problems with aversive dog training techniques

UK animal welfare, behaviour, training and veterinary organisations1 are warning of the possible dangers of using techniques for training dogs that can cause pain and fear, such as some of those seen used by Cesar Millan, who has announced a UK tour next year. The organisations have joined forces to voice their serious concerns about techniques which pose welfare problems for dogs and significant risk to owners who may copy them. These concerns are shared, and the statement supported, by similar organisations around the world2 and in continental Europe3. Aversive training techniques, which have been seen to be used by Cesar Millan, are based on the principle of applying an unpleasant stimulus to inhibit behaviour. This kind of training technique can include the use of prong collars, electric shock collars, restricting dogs′ air supply using nooses/leads or pinning them to the ground, which can cause pain and distress. The use of such techniques may compromise the welfare of dogs and may worsen the behavioural problems they aim to address, potentially placing owners at considerable risk. A number of scientific studies have found an association between the use of aversive training techniques and the occurrence of undesired behaviours in dogs.