NEW YORK (AP) -- America's fondness for Labrador retrievers is still setting records, but bulldogs are breaking new ground.

Labs reigned as the nation's top dog last year for the 24th year after breaking poodles' decades-old record in 2013, according to American Kennel Club rankings set to be released Thursday. But bulldogs have hit a new high -- No.

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Any episode of the "Dog Whisperer" carried a prominent warning not to attempt any of Millan's training methods on your own.

30eCesarC.jpgCesar Millan has a new cable TV show, "Cesar 911." Mills Entertainment 

I work in advertising and marketing so Cesar Millan, the so-called Dog Whisperer, intrigued me. This dog trainer had best-selling books and a hit TV show on National Geographic cable channel, and he starred in a profile in the New Yorker by Malcolm Gladwell.

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As "mom" to both a rat terrier and a 4 year old, I am often amazed by the similarities between the two. They both love balls, and possess zero table manners. Plus they're constantly doing things they shouldn't be doing, then giving me this innocent look like "Who, me?" Given all they had in common, I got to wondering whether dog trainers could teach parents how to raise well-behaved kids.

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"People think cages are cruel. Yet, a 'cage' – the impolite word for 'crate' – is an ideal hangout when the dog is learning how to behave."

DOG JUMP FEATUREA boxer huffs and puffs his way over a jump during a dog agility competition. Good dog training starts with house breaking, and using a crate helps.
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A Wisconsin couple says they were promised a therapy dog, but instead, received a dog that wasn't even housebroken.

Mary and Grant Hultman's 6-year-old son, Lucas, has Angelman's syndrome, a severe developmental disability.

"He has no self-preservation skills," Grant Hultman said. "He'll go up to a light bulb and just grab it, and he'll laugh.

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Television celebrity and dog trainer Cesar Millan brings his tour to El Paso on Saturday at the Abraham Chavez Theatre.

Television celebrity and dog trainer Cesar Millan brings his tour to El Paso on Saturday at the Abraham Chavez Theatre. (COURTESY PHOTO)

"Life is simple. We make it complicated."

That is the message that television celebrity and "Dog Whisperer" Cesar Millan truly believes and has lived by, even while growing up amid humble beginnings in Culiacán, Sinaloa, Mexico.

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