After serving in the US Navy, Shawn left the icy north of Minnesota for sunny Southern California and began his work with animals in a veterinary clinic. In 1992, a co-worker introduced him to the world of movie animals. As pictures of the co-worker’s husband training chimpanzees in Brazil circulated through the clinic, Shawn knew he had found his calling. He wanted to do what the trainer in the picture was doing – working with animals on movies. The trainer with the chimp was David Allsberry. A few months later, Shawn started working at Boone’s Animals for Hollywood. Soon, he got the call to drop everything and go to New Zealand to help work with the dogs on “White Fang”. The rest, as they say, is history.
Shawn credits his success to learning from the best trainers in the business and doing what he loves for a living. Shawn has extensive experience on camera, coordinating and performing difficult animal stunts and action. Though his ideal job would be a German Shepherd movie shot in New Zealand, Shawn’s animal training ability ranges from mice to water buffalo and everything in between!
You can see a complete list of Shawn’s credits on the Internet Movie Data Base.