Since 1999 Chris and Suhey Perondi have produced and performed more than 8,000 shows across North America featuring some of the most talented canines ever to set paw on a stage. Their business, Stunt Dog Productions is truly family owned and operated in every sense. Chris and Suhey are a married couple, they work with their son, Anthony, and Chris’ parents assist with costume and prop design.
A Stunt Dog Performance includes such stunning tricks as high jump challenges, flying disc stunts, racing, dancing, weave poll, barrel racing, jump rope, and skateboarding – to name just a few! In their farthest reaching show to date, the dogs performed on the 2014 Rose Parade float for the Lucy Pet Foundation. More than 700,000 live guests viewed the show and millions more caught their act by telecast.
When the Perondis are in search of a new dog to add to their pack, they always think rescue. Their dogs have all been adopted from shelters across the U.S. Chris and Suhey know how to spot potential performers among the diamonds in the ruff. Some of the traits they look for in their ideal dogs are the very same that cause millions of owners to give their pets up to shelters in the first place. Descriptions like “high energy”, “excitable” and “loves to run” may make the average adopter cringe, but not the Perondis.
Chris and Suhey have built their family and their livelihood around rescuing, training, and working side by side with performance dogs. The incredible canines they have trained have appeared on Oprah, Ellen and the Early Morning Show, not to mention hundreds of newspapers and magazines. With names like Tasmanian Tex, Flashy Ferrari, High Flying Harley and Spitfire Spinelli, you know these pups have some energy!
Every dog that performs for Stunt Dog Productions is also a beloved family pet. Chris and Suhey currently share their French Camp, CA home and 2 acres of property with 12 of their best performers. All of the stunt dogs have free reign over the Perondis’ house and yard.
They pile onto the couples’bed at night, or crash in the designated office/dog room. The home’s garage has been relegated as practice space complete with pads and mats. This set-up also comes in handy for the younger pups that haven’t quite mastered their manners yet (Ahem, Starlite and Kangaroo Kai!)
Meet some of the stars of Stunt Dog Productions:
Flashy Ferrari is a 9-year-old Cattle Dog/Border Collie mix. She was adopted in Kansas City, MO, and has become Stunt Dog Production’s biggest star. When Ferrari jumps you wonder if she’s ever going to come down!
Spitfire Spinelli is a 7-year-old Cattle Dog/Husky mix, rescued from the streets of Nashville, TN. Spinelli is the joker of the pack, always delighting the audience with her antics. She was nominated as one of the top 3 trick dogs on the CW World Dog Awards for jumping rope on her hind legs.
Crazy Confetti was adopted from the Yolo County Animal Shelter in Woodland, CA as a last chance pup facing euthanasia. She is a 6-year-old Jack Russell Terrier/Cattle Dog mix. NatGeo Wild’s World’s Greatest Dogs featured this sassy pup on their show last year. Confetti is best known for her famous “pawstand” where she does a hand stand in Chris’ palm. She also jumps rope and rides a skateboard – all this from a stray pooch on the euthanasia list.
Action Jackson, the 11-year-old Jack Russell, was rescued from a high kill shelter by the Happy Hearts Rescue in Los Angeles on the very day he was schedule to be put down. The Perondis made Jackson a member of their pack soon after. He has gone on to perform the pawstand on Ellen Degeneres, Oprah, and the Queen Latifah show.
Among the seasoned veterans are some newbie performers-in-training. Big Air Koda is a 2-year-old Goldendoodle in training for the high jump and dock diving. He has already mastered the 56-inch jump! 2-year-old Carolina Dog, Kangaroo Kai and Starlite the 9-month-old Border Collie are the Perondis’ latest rescues. They have yet to make their onstage dubuts.
You can read about each of the canine stars of Stunt Dog Productions here.
There are no breaks in the Perondi’s schedule. Even when they aren’t touring, there is always work to be done. Whether training some of the greener recruits, practicing with the seasoned pros or just exercising the whole pack, this family’s life revolves around their famous pups!
When a “Stunt Dog” reaches the end of his or her career, they still travel with the crew as part of the family, or retire to Chris’ parents’ home which is on the same 2-acre piece of California property. Their value to the Perondi family does not diminish just because they can no longer perform.
Chris and Suhey use the popularity of their show to spread their messages of adoption, responsible pet ownership and the importance of spaying and neutering. They work closely with rescue organizations, A Place to Bark , Shepherd of the Hills Humane Society, and the Lucy Pet Foundation.
Want to catch a show? Check out the schedule here or consider booking Stunt Dog Productions for your next event. You can also follow them on Facebook for training advice, contests and updates on where and when you can see these amazing pups in action!
Featured Image via Chris Perondi/Stunt Dog Productions