Meet The Trainer Who Has Rescued Over 78 Dogs

Career Canines, an ABC News creation which explores the relationship between humans and dogs across the country as they work together, has highlighted a trainer who has personally rescued (and adopted) over 78 dogs – he told ABC, “every one of them is a gem.”

J.R. Johns (creator of the Dog Gone Silly show) had his first performance with dogs back in 1981. He is a firm believer that people should adopt, rather than shop and points to his own amazing canine performers as a prime example of what time and patience can accomplish. He told ABC News, “they’re all capable of amazing things. It’s just the amount of time you put into the dog that make them great, not how much dough you pay for them.”

Jill Dobbs, with the SPCA of Northern Nevada, said that Johns comes to the shelter to seek out the dogs who no one else has given a chance. Johns referred to one of his four-legged performers, a dog named Chewy who had been returned to the shelter three different times, as a perfect example of a dog who just needs time, patience and training. Johns told ABC that Chewy tends to get over-excited, but stated that “it’s just something that you have to work through,” adding, “he’s an amazing dog.”

Johns shares his life, and his home, with a pack of highly trained rescue pups (and co-stars!) Though he admits that there’s no time off or vacation, he believes that the trade off is good – he told ABC, “we have a great life here.”

Find Career Canines on Facebook here.

About Career Canines:

“Man’s best friend” continue to surprise humans with their loyalty, compassion, and fearlessness. A cornerstone to a canine’s psychology is its sense of purpose—simply put, dogs like to have a job.


Penny Eims

Penny is a freelance writer who provided content to her National Dog News column at for 8 years. She is a current contributor to Fido Friendly Magazine, as well as a newly formed website, Pet Rescue Report. Penny is married and she has two rescued German shepherds and two kids.