Profile: Jennifer Burgess
Jennifer Burgess can be described as Mississippi State's own "dog whisperer."
When the family dog tries to bite visiting neighbors or has other undesirable behavior, Burgess uses her behaviorist approach to teach him better habits.
With a natural love for animals and a drive to improve their lives, the clinical instructor at Mississippi State's College of Veterinary Medicine helps animals and their owners learn how to establish healthy relationships. Burgess teaches parts of several courses with topics such as problem behaviors of puppies and kittens and human-animal bond and animal welfare.
Unlike the popular television show, "Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan," which emphasizes exerting physical dominance to control poorly behaved dogs, Burgess believes in training animals by focusing on a system of positive reinforcement and nonphysical punishments such as "time outs."
The key to changing animals' behavior is being consistent when giving out rewards or punishments, Burgess said.
And, don't worry—she practices what she teaches. She has three dogs and three cats.
Next week … Darvin Griffin !