Should We (Dog) Whisper To Our Kids?

I love the New York Times Fashion & Style section. It is consistently good for a laugh. My most recent giggle fit was courtesy of this article: Becoming the Alpha Dog in Your Own Home

I am very wary of criticizing people's parental disciplinary techniques (aside from spanking & related nonsense) for one reason: because it always comes back to bite one in the ass. However this tomfoolery cannot be anything other than a joke.

But other measures may yield an obedient child. Matthew Hranek, a photographer in New York, has a daughter, Clara, who is 6, and a Patterdale terrier, Charlie, who is a handful. Lately, Mr. Hranek said, he finds himself adopting Mr. Millan’s trademark “sshht!” sound — meant to snap dogs out of unconstructive patterns of thought or behavior — not just when Charlie jumps up on the kitchen counter, but also when Clara does. A bit of a joke? Sure. But it’s efficient. With none of the usual red-in-the-face parental haranguing, it reminds her who is boss in a syllable.

First: If his daughter is able to leap counter tops in a single bound he should not be sshhting her. He should hire a personal trainer to train her for the Olympics.

Second: I refuse to believe that this sound alone is enough to deter his daughter from doing something she shouldn't. If it is true then I am sure this gentleman could find a less demeaning method of distracting his daughter. She cannot possibly be that difficult if she is that easily "disciplined".

Third: Has society really grown this lazy? Are people honestly taking their parenting cues from a show about training dogs?

I love dogs and I think the Dog Whisperer is a cute show but something about using successful dog training techniques on one's children does not sit well with me. I am not a parenting expert (obviously) but there has to be a better way to raise thoughtful well behaved children.

The word obedient is used in the paragraph above. I do not want to raise obedient children. I want to raise children that are free-spirited and age-appropriately well-behaved. Obedience is for robot slaves not children.

What are some good attachment-parenting resources that outline non canine tested methods of child discipline? Do any of you agree with these techniques? This is a joke right? The New York Times is messing with us?

I tried Sshhting this guy once. He laughed at me. Yes, dogs laugh.