Our documentary HONDS caues a lot of discussion, such as on NPO1 OP1 with Martin Gaus. Watch the hole episode in Dutch

OP1 discussion: Martin Gaus is angry on Ron his methodes

The Teledoc Campus documentary HONDS by director Josefien van Kooten unexpectedly creates a lot of discussion. Most dog magazines do not want to be associated with our film and we get angry reactions in the email and on social media. People disagree with Ron’s way of training which they believe is outdated and proven incorrect. In the NPO program Op1, dog expert Martin Gaus has a discussion with our main character Ron Kusters. Nikita and her dog Chilli also feature in our film are also present. 

Director Josefien about the discussion: “It was never my intention to show a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way of training. But I am glad that a discussion about it has arisen. It will always work out well for the well-being of dogs. For me, the relationship between humans and dogs is so beautiful, valuable and rich, you can see that in the film, but at the same time I also find the bond a bit painful in essence, because the dog will always have to adapt to the world of humans. The way of training does not change this fact in my opinion.”

The film screened at the Dutch Film Festival in the Golden Calf selection and is screened in various venues throughout the country these months.
The TV premiere is on Sunday, October 25 at 11 p.m. on KRO-NCRV on NPO3.

This film is made in the context of Teledoc Campus with the support from NPO, CoBO, NPO Fund and the Netherlands Film Fund.

Visit the English website of the movie


OP1 discussion with from left to right Martin Gaus (dog expert), Nikita Merken (main character HONDS), Arie Slob (minister) Ron Kusters (main character HONDS) and presenter Jort Kelder

Tragicomic observational documentary that shows the complex relationship between humans and dogs. People that have problems with their dog come to dog whisperer Ron for help. Their dogs often cause many problems; they refuse to listen, show anxious behaviour, or are aggressive and bite. It seems not the dogs, but the owners themselves that need further training. In observing long shots we see how dog owners struggle with the complex relationship between man and animal. The love for our dogs often runs deep, but so does our wish (and necessity) to make them obey us; which might only be possible if we become more like a dog ourselves.

Watch the trailer