“Dog Whisperer” Cesar Millan and his son, Andre, took a road trip together across the country to film a new TV series debuting next month.
They stopped in Missouri along the way and did not like what they learned about the state’s well-known problems with puppy mills.
The highest concentration of those operations — with their crowded, unsanitary, unsafe conditions — is in the Midwest, specifically in Missouri, according to the ASPCA.
“Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation,” which premieres March 3 on Nat Geo Wild, includes an episode airing March 24 that was filmed in St. Louis, one of seven cities they visited.
There, Millan and his son worked with an organization called Serendipity German Shepherd Dog Rescue.
They helped the group with a dog named Bruce Wayne who was suffering anxiety and fear of people after being rescued from a Missouri puppy mill.
The state’s problems with unsafe dog breeding operations are well-documented.
Conditions at Missouri puppy mills cited on the Humane Society of the United States’ “Horrible Hundred” report of 2016 ranged from dogs found “matted with feces,” to underweight dogs to dogs “found entrapped in wire flooring” and puppies living in darkness.
The problems were documented by state or USDA inspectors, according to the Humane Society.
“Missouri is the home of puppy mills,” Andre, 22, tells People. “These are dogs that are bounded and stacked in cages for years and are bred to breed. I got to see the reality of why we’re spreading the awareness of what’s happening in our own backyard.”
Andre and his famous dad visited organizations and people rescuing canines for the new series, something of a comeback for the dog behaviorist nicknamed the “Dog Whisperer.”
His show that bore that name aired from 2004 to 2012. He currently hosts and produces the Nat Geo Wild series, “Cesar 911.”
His new show focuses on more than just dogs and their behavioral issues.
Millan and his son visit with groups helping veterans and their service dogs, animal-rescue organizations training K-9 dogs, and therapy dogs working with autistic children.
“The United States is very proactive in rescuing and adopting dogs,” Millan told Fox News. “But I think we have to do a little bit more campaigns towards spay/neuter because we are having an overpopulation problem. So even if you keep rescuing you will never stop the euthanization because the overpopulation continues.”