In his National Geographic show The Dog Whisperer, Millan talks about controlling dogs using "energy." But critics say that his real tools for controlling animals are physical punishment and putting them under psychological stress.
Some of his training techniques, like the use of a prong collar, have been banned under the Austrian Animal Welfare Act.
The Austrian Society for the Protection of Animals (Tierschutzverein) has questioned why Millan is even allowed to put on a show in Vienna and has called on dog owners to boycott it.
Millan denies that his techniques are cruel and Vienna’s Municipal Department of Veterinary Services and Animal Welfare has said that Millan explained in advance which techniques he will be using at the Stadthalle, and it sees no reason to stop the show going ahead.
Christian Hölzl, spokesman for the Tierschutzverein, said that this sends “a devastating signal to the public – these methods are dangerous for dogs and people should not take this as a model for dog training.”
Millan is also due to appear in Salzburg on September 30th.