Behind the Scenes with TV Show Animal Cribs

On Monday, September 24, 2018 our recently wrapped, hand polished Starfire Direct van made its way to the latest set of Animal Planet’s Animal Cribs.

Animal Cribs?

It is a show where Designer Antonio Ballatore and his team of "Catsperts and Barkitects" use their expertise to transform drab, cramped homes and outside areas into functional, high-style spaces for both pets and the people they love.


During Season 1, Antonio and team…

  1. Redesigned a cabin for a family and their blind dog.
  2. Did a complete backyard renovation featuring a pet-safe fire pit.
  3. Turned a man-cave into a masterpiece that accommodated 20 pets.
  4. Designed a room complete with a soaring sculptural cat climbing wall.

How is that for a first season?

Hey Buddy!

Antonio Ballatore and Jonathan BurlinghamLeft: Jonathan Burlingham, CEO of Starfire Direct. Right: Antonio Ballatore, Designer and Host of Animal Planet's Animal Cribs TV series.


Antonio and Jonathan Burlingham, CEO of Starfire Direct, met in 2009 on HGTV’s show The Antonio Treatment. Since then, they have worked together on various projects, both on set and off.

I’m always excited to work alongside Antonio. We’ve known each other for nearly 10 years and have done a handful of projects together,” Jonathan notes when asked about this project before rolling, “I’m excited to see what he has planned for this episode of Animal Cribs and how Starfire can contribute.


Starfire Direct on the set of Animal CribsStarfire's Jonathan and Lindsey head into the project.

Daphne - Animal CribsAs we made our way on set, we were greeted with a friendly tail wag by Daphne. A cutie owned by the Senior Producer.

Bowie - Animal CribsNext, we met Bowie; named after David Bowie. Why you ask? They both have one blue eye and one brown eye. Rockin’ awesome!

Edie - Animal CribsLast, but not least we got to meet Edie; Antonio’s newest addition to his family. Antonio rescued Edie last September from Los Angeles’ MaeDay Rescue shelter after seeing her photo online.

"When I first saw Edie, I knew without a doubt that she would fit right into our family” says Antonio. “However, when I got her, she had been underfed, abused and abandoned. She was constantly frightened. So, in addition to feeding her a healthy diet, I took her everywhere with me to show her that she is loved and safe."

Today was no exception as Edie appeared on set wearing a stylish pet carrier in timeless denim. And believe it or not, they filmed the entire day with Antonio wearing Edie in her carrier. And honestly… she looked like she was lovin’ every minute of it!


Filming Behind the Scenes of Animal CribsThe Animal Crib's film crew readies the camera to capture the magic being worked.

Next, we got to filming! Jonathan and Antonio had a great time selecting the outdoor décor that would help to transform the pet’s backyard into something the entire family would enjoy.

As for Lindsey (COO of Starfire Direct) and I...well...we tried to be as an inconspicuous as possible.

After many takes and a lot of laughs, Film Director Chuck said he got exactly what he needed.


During the actual filming, the team certainly had their share of funny outtakes. The main bloopers were the pronunciation and definition of the below words.  

Transitional Wicker

Pronunciation: tran-ZISH-uh-nuhl
Definition: Is a more contemporary style furniture with wicker as the material. 

Palapa Umbrella

Pronunciation: pah-lah-pah
Definition: Also known as grass thatched umbrellas or grass umbrellas. 

Rattan Wicker

Pronunciation: rat·tan
Definition: The thin pliable stems of a palm, used to make furniture. 

Adirondack Chairs

Pronunciation: ad-uh-ron-dak
A simple chair made of wood or man-made materials, generally used outdoors.

After the filming was all done, we all walked away having had some good laughs and a few inside jokes that we’ll chuckle about for years to come.


This episode is set to air in Spring of 2019. We'll definitely make an announcement on our social media and via email when we have an exact date. But until then, if you have not already, watch season 1! It’s a show every “bunny” will love.



Main Image: The Starfire team hangs out with Animal Crib's Antonio Ballatore.


Kristy Benedict