Here comes the canine cavalry
Animal Planet essentially approached us, and I did not have to audition because they [wanted] to showcase myself and my family in the rescue,” TV host Amanda Giese told the Inquirer via e-mail, prior to her press appearance in Quezon City today for the Discovery Festival.
Giese, who hosts the show “Amanda to the Rescue” (Tuesdays, 9:55 p.m.) with her family, related that the cable channel was looking for a new program to include in its lineup. “So [our production company] Indigo Films came out. They filmed with us the Season 1 pilot … [When] Animal Planet saw it, [executives] said, ‘Absolutely, this is the kind of content we want. It’s very family-centered. It’s real.’”
Giese, her partner Gary Walters and their teen kids Jade and Beast go on rescue missions for canines that require immediate attention. Giese admitted that it was tough narrowing their most moving encounters down.
“Some of the heartwarming experiences that I have are when I bring in animals to my care,” she said. “They’d never kindness or positive human interactions. They’re so timid and scared. I think that’s the first moment that they actually trust you—the first kiss, the first time they let you pet them. Every animal really does want that love.”
On the show’s entertainment value, she explained, “It’s a very family-centered show. You can sit down with toddlers or elementary school or high school kids … Everyone can watch the show and take something positive from it. That’s really important because we’re so disconnected and we’re in a fast-paced world. For one hour a day, we can actually tune in to something we can all relate to, and find something inspirational in it.”
For her Philippine visit, Giese, who has a background in veterinary medicine, said that she is “scheduled to pretty much hang out with puppies all day long.”
“I am scheduled to hang out with dogs, so anyone who is looking to adopt an animal can definitely come and visit us at the PAWS (Philippine Animal Welfare Society) booth,” said Giese. “I’m really excited to answer any questions people may have about pet ownership.”
“Amanda to the Rescue” debuted last October in the United States. Giese described the common qualities shared by its fans: “All my viewers are animal welfare advocates, all animal warriors. They believe in rescue, spaying and neutering, quality of care, and the fact that animals deserve a fighting chance to be loved.”
Based on her extensive experience with caring for injured or abandoned animals, Giese related that the bonds between humans and pets can be crucial to the owners’ sanity and survival: “Pet owners and I relate really well to each other, because sometimes our pets are our best friends. Sometimes, you’ve had a hard day at work and you can’t vent to your fellow employees, or you come home and you don’t want to vent to your partner or your children. So you rely on your animal. And for some people, it’s their only friend. They’re our sanity in a lot of ways and they give us purpose.”
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