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Rick Caran Dog Trainer & Entertainer Interview On Pet Bonding & Entertainment.

Updated: May 27, 2023

I was born in Manhattan, moved to and grew up in Smithtown, Long Island, and now live in Centerport, Long Island. I grew up, with four brothers in a crazy house, that at any given time, had dogs and cats, and all types of injured wild animals that our friends and family brought to us for rehabiiltation.  I always loved the TV show, Lassie, and I wanted to train dogs. 

My first experience with training dogs was when I was 8 yrs old. I would visit the local pound (shelter) and they “let me visit and play with the dogs”, if I cleaned up the poop and such, while the workers there drank beer and smoked cigarettes in the office! Haha!

I was often at the shelter when people would look for an adoption and when I showed them the tricks the dogs did, it was a big heart warmer and selling point…

I often tell audiences that “I still train like an 8 year old; it's fun for the dog and fun for the human! And I KNOW that you CAN train an old dog! ANY dog can learn something.”

A life changing experience for me was when my partner Judy found a tiny, sickly little Yorkie, in the street. We cleaned her up and improved her health.  Nobody claimed her and thanks to the internet, she became a beloved dog around the globe.  Eventually she became known as“The Worlds Only Poker Playing Dog”, on YouTube.  She had a beautiful, sweet, loving and gentle personality that attracted people whereever she went.

We started doing shows for my mom in a senior home, then for gatherings, fairs, TV shows, charity fundraisers, commercial gigs, and rescue events; I wrote two columns for an international Yorlie magazine for 10 years and we did commercials, a movie, and world dog show events in the US, Italy and Sweden.

We have been blessed with a quarter century of wonderful dogs, mostly rescues. However we got two of our Yorkies, Ruby and Cali from the wonderful breeder, Patti Hood in Tennassee.  All the pups are wonderful tricksters no matter where they come from.   

- Rick Caran

Rick Caran is a dog trainer and entertainer. He's owner of Team Jilli Dog with Rick Caran. Rick travels the US, as well as tours in Sweden, Italy, San Marino and Japan with his yorkies and chihuahua. Rick Caran's theory is that if your child learns how to train a dog, your child learns the basic of learning. Rick feels that people can create their own mental health time by doing 5 minutes of fun training at night with their dogs, while building an amazing bond with their best friends.


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