Is Your Pooch Ready to “Go Hollywood”?

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When you were watching that movie last night, you may have seen a Golden Retriever, a Dalmatian or a Westie on screen. Now, the question in the back of your mind is – ‘Is my Beagle ready to be in the movies?’ Well, your veterinarian says your pet dog is just the best behaved dog they can imagine. Your critter even has figured out how and when to mug for a picture, a regular scene stealer with a personality that would have given Rin Tin Tin a good run for his money.

Okay, but you have to consider this. If your dog is to be the next star canine in a real Hollywood movie or television series, your pooch can’t just look good. Your dog is going to have to be well trained and know, not just the basics, but a few great tricks to show what he can do.

Most of the scenes you see dogs doing on the big screen look so great because Hollywood has a way of putting the dog’s tricks in the best light and making the shots work. They combine them as a series of tricks into a final production that works for a particular scene very well.

It’s the basic tricks that are going to land your dog a movie role. There are many training facilities that offer the classes necessary to teach your puppy the tricks and obedience that are required by canine actors.

Almost all of what dogs do in the movies are easy tricks. Most of the common tricks the dogs need to do are bow, play dead, crawl, speak on cue, sneeze, hide your eyes, pray, touch the target, wave, find it, roll over, turn out the light and whine.

Learning all of the tricks might be the easy part of getting ready for the movies. The hard one for lots of dogs is working on a set with strangers all around and a ton of distractions. Also, in most cases, your dog will need to follow the lead of the set’s dog wrangler, not you. These are some real challenges for some dogs to face.

Snow Dogs

Copyright - Walt Disney Pictures

If you can teach your dog all the tricks, but also the basics of working with strangers on a Hollywood set without freaking out, you might just have a dog like D.J. as the Siberian Husky “Demon” in the film Snow Dogs.

So… your pooch is ready and willing to go to the movies. What is your next step? The thing that will make your dog stand out is to put together a compelling portfolio for your dog. All the current photos, his list of skills and tricks, training and hopefully some great videos of your dog doing some of his best tricks.

Many of the training schools for movie dogs will help you get your dog into the industry. Don’t forget there is a lot of ad work and commercial work for your aspiring mongrel to shoot for also.

Finally, your dog loves you a lot (hopefully, the feeling is mutual). If your dog does not enjoy acting and does not want to be a Hollywood star, your dog will certainly tell you about it. Keep a watchful eye on your pal and keep things fun for him or her.

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