Cesar Millan Cleared of Animal Cruelty Charges Following Investigation
By Alex Ungerman
"Dog Whisperer" Cesar Millan will not face charges of animal cruelty in connection with an incident that occurred on his show, Cesar 911, of a pig being attacked by a French bulldog/terrier mix.
A rep for Los Angeles County Animal Control told ET, "After a comprehensive investigation including inspecting the pig, reviewing the full veterinary report, reviewing the full video, and interviewing everyone involved, our investigators from the Major Case Unit (MCU) packaged the case up and presented it to the DA's office two weeks ago. They, like us, didn't have much to stand on with regard to filing animal cruelty charges against Mr. Millan."
"It was a painstaking investigation, obviously a high profile investigation, because of the vast media coverage," the statement continued. "We appreciate the information and concern that we received along the way and we encourage people to continue to be active in their community and to report anything they view to be animal cruelty to our department right away."
Meanwhile, Millan released a statement to ET, saying, "I am pleased but not surprised by this news – our animal handling procedures are safe and humane. Just like LA County Animal Control, my team and I are 100 percent dedicated to the proper care of all animals, including the farm pig in this case. I am continuing my work rescuing and rehabilitating even the most difficult problem dogs, which has saved the lives of thousands of animals that otherwise would have been euthanized."
Additionally, the Cesar 911 star's attorney told ET in a statement, "We have learned that LA County Animal Control’s investigation is over and no charges will be brought. We appreciate Animal Control’s comprehensive, independent, and fair investigation, which Cesar Millan actively cooperated with throughout. We were always confident that Animal Control would conclude that Cesar and his team did nothing wrong and that there would be no charges. We are very glad to learn that is the case."
The investigation stemmed from a Feb. 26 episode of Millan's Nat Geo Wild series that showed an aggressive dog biting the ear of a pot-bellied pig that started to bleed during a behavior training session.
In response to complaints, a rep for Nat Geo Wild said, "The clip caused some concern for viewers who did not see or understand the full context of the encounter."
The network says the situation between the two animals was closely monitored, adding that Millan "took precautions, such as putting the dog, Simon, on a long lead to assess his behavior, before making initial corrections and removing the leash."