Let’s face it. Most of us secretly believe that our dogs are the handsomest, smartest, sweetest, friendliest — or some superlative quality — pups in the world. But not many of us have the ability to make the rest of the world recognize that fact.
Jill Lane has that ability, excelling in the role of manager, agent, and stage mom. And of course she had a bit of help from her client.
Travelin’ Jack, the early days
Jill first encountered Jack, an Olde English Bulldogge — which is not he same as a regular English bulldog, as Jill explains in the interview — in a shelter in Colorado. He was only supposed to be a traveling companion to Jill, a writer and New Mexico travel industry expert. But things didn’t quite turn out that way.
Travelin’ Jack gets a blog, a TV show, and becomes an influencer
I don’t want to give too much away; Jill tells the story far better than I can. Suffice it to say that Jill decided to let Jack describe his travel adventures in his own voice in the aptly named Travelin’ Jack’s Dog Blog. This, in turn, led to his discovery by a TV producer. Jack turned out to be a small screen natural, and got his own “Jack’s Track’s” segment; I’ve posted an example here.
As a result of his public profile, Jack began opening up travel possibilities for others of the canine persuasion.
Travelin’ Jack’s political career takes off
Lobbying, fundraising, a constituency that included a llama — apparently, there are no restrictions against interspecies voting — involvement with the human gubernatorial race… Again, Jill tells it better, but I’m not giving anything away when I reveal that Jack became the first unofficial canine governor of New Mexico. And when the human governor of New Mexico signed a bill into law that benefited all dogs, Jack was there to lend a paw.
Travelin’ Jack gives back
Sure, politics is all about power, but Travelin’ Jack has used his considerable clout to do good — to raise money for shelters and other animal welfare causes and, as I’ve mentioned, to open doors for other pets who like to travel. He even managed to break down breed stereotypes, getting one lodging that had previously banned all bully breeds to change their policies. Bully for you, Jack!
And what about Jill?
I had fully intended to focus on Jill’s role in bringing Travelin’ Jack’s talents to the public in this blog post; I cover it at length in the interview and I thought it was the question that all of us with talented dogs would want answered. And yet, I found myself writing almost exclusively about Travelin’ Jack.
That dog is a charmer. What’s next, TJ? First canine president? Travelin’ Jack, the Movie?