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“He may not even recognize he is making a diagnosis,” she said, adding that when he says a dog has separation anxiety or dominance problems, “he’s putting a label on it and in reality that label is a diagnosis.”

In California, that is legal, but in Texas it is not, she said, because “making a diagnosis and setting up a course of treatment is restricted to certain professionals.”

Daniels dismissed the critics, saying that “few have ever spoken to him directly or taken the time to understand what he is all about _ which is a man with a deep passion for helping animals and people.”

That passion for animals _ especially dogs _ is evident. Millan said he’s never met a dog he didn’t like, and chose a canine as his lone companion for a hypothetical stranding on a deserted island.

He also defended his love for pit bulls, saying: “It’s not the breed, it’s the human behind the dog.” Rehabbing dogs is easy, he said, but training people is not.

“A dog would never see me as a Mexican or immigrant or think things people say about me. Dogs don’t rationalize. They don’t hold anything against a person. They don’t see the outside of a human but the inside of a human,” he said.

But there are some times when he prefers people over animals. He was tactful when he said he had both a human and a canine best friend. And he was quick to say that he preferred the Super Bowl over the “Puppy Bowl,” the Animal Planet’s pet-friendly TV show that features puppies romping on a room-sized football field.

“I have a `Puppy Bowl’ every day,” he explained.

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