Best-selling author and TV host Cesar Millan is most famously known as The Dog Whisper, thanks to his ability to skillfully counsel and train dogs to become their best selves. Millan built his business from nothing after coming to the U.S. with no money and no English skills. But after all that hard work, at what seemed like the peak of his success in 2010, he discovered that he didn’t actually own any parts of the business he had built.
In an exclusive interview with Fast Company Millan explains how he rebuilt his business from scratch: “I learned about contacts, and added some lawyers to my pack,” he jokes. He also shares why he trusts his dogs to help him make decisions on who to work with, including the time he decided not to work with someone that his dog didn’t like: “You can’t purchase the integrity of a dog,” he explains.
So what’s next for Millan’s canine empire? He’s taking his message and his business global by starting to work in China–and his sons are following in his footsteps, each hosting dog training shows of their own.