One of my friends recently turned me on to the show “The Dog Whisperer” with Cesar Millan and I was instantly hooked.  I’ve learned a ton from watching this guy in action and his brand of “dog psychology” has helped me rehabilitate my younger brother’s rambunctious beagle.  But as fun as it is to modify a stubborn dog’s behavior, it was the realization that these same techniques can be applied to romantic relationships that led to all the wear and tear on my TiVo.

Now before the ladies start freaking out, please allow me to explain.  I’m in no way implying that a man needs to slap a collar around his girlfriend’s neck before leaving the house (unless he’s dating Kim Kardashian).  However, all men must realize that most women will respond to a dominant, assertive male who isn’t afraid to “lead” and watching Cesar Millan in action will help keep this in the forefront of your mind.

If the last sentence left you scratching your head, then you need to keep reading.  These five upcoming tips, courtesy of Cesar Millan, are going to magically transform you from a sissy little lapdog into a powerful Siberian Husky.  Woof, woof.

1. Women need three things to feel happy and balanced in a relationship

Cesar Millan constantly stresses that dogs need three things in their lives in order to be truly happy and balanced: affection, exercise and discipline.  Replace “exercise” with “sex” and these three principles apply to women, as well.  While affection and sex are no-brainers, not all men are aware of a woman’s need for proper discipline.

Let me stress that by “discipline” I don’t mean that you should zap your girlfriend with a shock collar each time she pees on the carpet.  What I’m referring to is the fact that most women appreciate a man who has the level of self-esteem and personal strength necessary to set up boundaries in his relationships.

Whenever an attractive man’s boundaries are crossed, he will quickly (yet calmly) let his girl know that her behavior will not be tolerated (NOTE: sometimes it’s best to simply ignore the behavior initially) and women greatly appreciate this show of strength from the men they love.  Failing to stay true to your principles (i.e. allowing a woman to walk all over you) is a sure-fire way to lose her respect and attraction.

2. A woman should be put in a position where she can be proud of herself

There are many advantages to proper leash placement.  By placing a leash high up on a dog’s neck, you can easily keep their head upright (like a show dog) which forces them into a “proud” position.  The human equivalent would be standing up straight with your chin up and shoulders back and down.

Making a woman feel proud of herself, however, is not as easy as changing her body language, but is absolutely necessary if you want to keep her happy over the long run.  One way to do this is to set things up so your girl is in a position to display her unique talents on a frequent basis.  And as she does, make sure to constantly praise her efforts to ensure that she feels valuable and appreciated.

3. When walking with your girl, it’s your responsibility to lead

A common mistake made when dog walking is allowing the animal to drag you all over the place instead of training it to follow closely behind you.  Putting up with this behavior is a sign of submission on the owner’s part which leads the dog to believe that HE is the pack leader… not his master.  Sadly, a lot of men let their girlfriends and wives drag them around in a similar fashion.

Nothing irritates me more than watching some poor guy walking two feet behind his girlfriend with his tail between his legs.  When I see this, I just want to smack him upside the head and help him look for his testicles.  Believe it or not, most women aren’t too keen on having to treat their men like children and allowing your girl to drag you around like an inattentive four-year-old sends the message that you’d much rather be at home playing in your sandbox.

Somebody must take the lead in every relationship and if the man doesn’t step up, the woman usually will.  But again, this does nothing good for a man’s perceived attractiveness.  If you’re gonna take over the female role, then you might as well go to Vicki Secrets and find a pair of panties that matches your lipstick.

Look at pictures or video of David Beckham walking with his wife and you’ll see that he’s always slightly in front of her and focused on his destination.  His fingers will also be intertwined with hers, with the back of his palm facing in the direction he’s moving (which is a sign of dominance and control).

Simply put, he is leading like a good man should (paying attention to where he’s going while expecting his partner to follow) and most women will enjoy “submitting” to this type of behavior.

Now before the feminists plan a field day, realize that there’s a huge difference between “dominant” and “domineering” so before you go filling your clips up, please consult the nearest dictionary.

4. Never give affection at the wrong times

It’s a mistake to give affection (petting, treats, etc.) to animals when their minds are agitated.  This will only reinforce the agitated mental state.  Instead, Cesar Millan suggests waiting until the animal reaches a state of calm submission before dishing out the love.

Giving in to your girlfriend’s demands at the first sign of discontent or bitchiness not only sets a bad precedent, but also reinforces this unwanted behavior.  Keep it up and you’ll be encouraging her to bitch and moan whenever she wants something from you, since she knows you’ll quickly start jumping through hoops to please her.

Not only will this make your life miserable but it also erodes your partner’s respect and desire for you.  Just like how it’s a huge mistake to toss Fido a biscuit after he drops a deuce on your new Pumas, it’s just as big a blunder to reward your girl when she acts like a total brat.

5. You must always be leading

Never forget that you must always maintain your status as the “pack leader” if you want to have a successful relationship.  Luckily for you, most women will gladly let you keep this role (although they’ll occasionally test your resolve) if you don’t abuse your power.  There’s no such thing as tenure in the game of love so don’t get caught slacking or you’ll be kicked to the curb ever so quick.

And if you’ve fallen into the trap of constantly asking your girl where she wants to go or what she wants to do, you’re probably driving her nuts so knock it off and start “suggesting” instead of inquiring.  Decisions are sexy, dammit, so man up and start making them.

Till next time…

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Make it happen,

-Jay Cataldo