This article was produced in collaboration with Amazon Prime Video
This fall, Prime Video shines the spotlight on the unparalleled bond that dogs and humans share with the release of The Pack, a new Amazon Original competition series. The series follows dogs and their human companions as they travel the world, relying on each other as they compete in challenges that demonstrate the strength of the incredible connections between people and their pups.
An adventure show about dogs?
To make things even more interesting, The Pack is hosted by dog-lover Lindsey Vonn (yes, that Lindsey Vonn, the champion athlete and gold medalist), and her loyal canine companion, Lucy. The show depicts twelve teams of dogs and humans embarking on an epic journey across the world, facing unique obstacles that test and improve their bonds, all in the hopes of winning the final prize: $500,000 and an additional $250,000 for their favorite animal charity.
So, what are the details?
So, how do they win? The teams encounter new challenges in every location, each meticulously designed by veterinarians and dog experts, that eventually help prove which dog/human team has the strongest bond. Rover’s very own Dog People Panelist, Nicole Ellis, happens to be one of the certified dog trainers, safety, and wellness experts on the show—traveling with the team for the entire series!
“On the road, the safety team—which was made up of two trainers and two vets—was there for every second to make sure the dogs weren’t stressed out, and were enjoying themselves,” Nicole explained. “We also were involved in creating the challenges, casting correct dogs, and the training process.”
The entire crew was dedicated to making the show a comfortable and safe experience for participants, and an entertaining one for viewers. Whether they were out scouting appropriate locations for challenges, creating a 22-page safety manual about proper dog interaction, or strapping pups into super-safe harnesses in every taxi or plane seat while traveling, the team knew that ensuring the wellbeing of the animals was always top priority. As was making sure the dogs, and their humans, really had the chance to showcase their style and skills.
“As a dog trainer I love seeing the training shine, and as that happens you see their bond shine,” says Nicole. “The dogs’ confidence changes, and their bond changes. And you end up really rooting for the dogs and the people as they conquer things that they’ve never done before.”
But this was also a different kind of experience for Nicole. Though she’s used to training dogs not to bark or jump up on people, this show required a more unique approach. “I was coming up with creative ways to teach dogs to play piano, things like that. Like humans, all dogs learn differently, so we were coming up with different ways to learn things. The owners were so happy and surprised at what their dogs could actually do.”
Nicole said her experience working on The Pack is closely connected to her experience working with Rover, explaining, “My work with Rover is all about educating pet owners and ensuring pet happiness, basically doing more with our pets. Getting people to do more with their pets, and train more, that really all goes onto the show, it’s just during a worldwide adventure.”
The Pack‘s impact at home
When asked what she’d like people to take away from the show, Nicole says, “I hope this will help people get inspired to do more with their dogs. Even a little bit of training each day can do so much for your dog, and for your bond. You don’t need a private plane like on the show to have a good time,” she says, laughing. “You can teach them fun tricks using training videos on Rover that will grow their confidence and grow that bond. And well-behaved dogs can go more places with you, making them feel even more like a part of your family.”
Oh, and one more thing. As a way of showing their dedication to helping animals all over the globe, The Pack donated to a variety of animal rescue organizations and charities in the many countries they visited, totaling an additional $250,000. That’s something else that viewers can feel good about when watching The Pack’s action unfold.
When and where can I watch The Pack?
The Pack premieres on November 20 and will be streamable for Amazon Prime members exclusively via the Prime Video app for TVs, connected devices including Fire TV, mobile devices, and online at amazon.com/originals. Since the series is a global release, it’ll be available on primevideo.com for Prime Video members in more than 240 countries and territories. The Pack is produced by Amazon Studios and Renegade 83, an Entertainment One company.