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[12/15/08 - 08:24 AM]
Animal Planet Swoops in to Transform Ordinary Dogs Into Extraordinary Pets in New Series Underdog to Wonderdog
Ryan Smith hosts the series, due on Saturday, January 3 at 8:00/7:00c.

[via press release from Animal Planet]

Animal Planet Swoops in to Transform Ordinary Dogs Into Extraordinary Pets in New Series UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG

- The Wonder Team Joins Forces to Makeover Shelter Canines on January 3rd -

SILVER SPRING, Md., Dec. 15 -- Every day thousands of dogs are brought to shelters--unkempt, undernourished and unloved. But help is on the way for these poor pups as Animal Planet's doggie Wonder Team comes to the rescue in the new series UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG. With the help of our fantastic foursome, each episode follows the transformation of one helpless pup as it undergoes a complete metamorphoses, becoming the dog it was always destined to be. Every shelter dog is rescued, groomed, trained and rehabilitated before finally being placed into a loving home - equipped with its very own custom-designed dog house. Watch as the show's host, trainer, groomer and carpenter use their canine expertise to revamp these down-on-their-luck pups beginning Saturday, January 3, at 8 PM (ET/PT).

"Celebrity makeovers, home makeovers and now finally doggie makeovers," says Marjorie Kaplan, president and general manager of Animal Planet Media. Not only is UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG the kind of transformational television audiences love, these surprising makeovers truly change the lives of the dogs and their new families."

The seriesbegins with the rescue of a Yorkshire terrier, appropriately named Lucky. After being hit by a car, Lucky badly needed a surgery that her previous owners could not afford. When we first meet her, she is still in the care of a local shelter, shivering and traumatized. UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG'S premiere episode follows Lucky's journey from that shelter in Brooklyn through her transformation with the Wonder Team and finally to her new life with the loving Maryanski family and their 11-year-old daughter Olivia. Complete with background stories on these well-deserving families, UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG shows that sometimes the families need the love of a dog just as much as the dogs need them.

Of course, the happy ending would not be possible without the dedication of the members of Animal Planet's Wonder Team. Led by host Ryan Smith, the team invests themselves into the rehabilitation of these unfortunate pups. He currently co-hosts BETJ's My Two Cents and is a skilled sports analyst and television personality.

"UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG really pulls on your heartstrings and gives you a different perspective on what's important in life," says host Ryan Smith. "It is truly amazing to see the dogs go from living in shelters to being part of amazing families in only a few short weeks."

Smith is joined on UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG by professional dog trainer and author Andrea Arden, who has also appeared on Animal Planet's DOGS 101. In addition, styling extraordinaire Ali McLennan lends her American Academy of Pet Grooming training to smooth out these scuffed-up pups, and the show's big-hearted canine carpenter, David Leon, builds doggie dream homes, complete with windows, stone exteriors and even wallpaper with the help of years of carpentry and masonry experience.

UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG is produced for Animal Planet by Sharp Entertainment. Bob Larson, Matt Sharp and Jon Grosskopf are the executive producers for Sharp Entertainment, and Mick Kaczorowski is the executive producer for Animal Planet.

Animal Planet Media (APM), a multi-media business unit of Discovery Communications, is the world's only entertainment brand that immerses viewers in the full range of life in the animal kingdom with rich, deep content via multiple platforms and offers animal lovers and pet owners access to a centralized online, television and mobile community for immersive, engaging, high-quality entertainment, information and enrichment. APM consists of the Animal Planet television network, available in more than 95 million homes in the US; online assets www.animalplanet.com, the ultimate online destination for all things animal; the 24/7 broadband channel, Animal Planet Beyond; Petfinder.com, the #1 pet-related Web property globally that facilitates pet adoption; and other media platforms including a robust Video-on-Demand (VOD) service; mobile content; and merchandising extensions.





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· UNDERDOG TO WONDERDOG (ANIMAL PLANET)









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