Joel Slaven has been working with animals for over 40 years. His career began in Columbus, Ohio, raising and training exotic animals at the Columbus Zoo. It was there that he worked with the Columbus Zoo’s Director Emeritus Jack Hanna, host of “.” Joel has been the head animal trainer and show producer for many parks including Cypress Gardens, Silver Springs, Six Flags in Texas and Georgia, and Arabian Nights Dinner Theatre. He has worked with and trained a variety of exotic animals: lions, tigers, cougars, primates, camels, hoof-stock, birds, reptiles and numerous other small mammals. Joel was also the animal expert for television shows like “The George and Alana Show,” “Crook and Chase,” Disney’s “Mickey Mouse Club”, and “The Carol & Marilyn Show.” His movie production work includes training animals for “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective,” Disney’s “That Darn Cat” and “Rain Maker.”
In 1997, Joel Slaven established “Joel Slaven’s Professional Animals, Inc.” Not only is JSPA, Inc., the largest producer of domestic animal shows in the world, but we are also the proud rescuers of hundreds of cats and dogs, dozens of pot-bellied pigs, and numerous ducks, pigeons, rats, skunks, and exotic birds from shelters across the country. We have an excellent reputation for the quality of our shows and the professionalism of our staff. We pride ourselves on our animal care and the lives we provide for them, from adoption to retirement.
Currently, we provide domestic and exotic animal shows for SeaWorld Orlando, SeaWorld San Diego, SeaWorld San Antonio, Busch Gardens Tampa, Busch Gardens Willliamsburg, the Texas State Fair and the Columbus Zoo. JSPA is also proud to have been a part of “101 Dalmatians, The Musical” that toured the United States from Oct 2009 to April 2010.
We are dedicated to conservation education and animal rescue in hopes of building a better future for animals and people alike. Our clients can be confident that we have one of the best animal facilities in the country. Our enclosures exceed all and requirements, as well as providing an immense amount of enrichment for each animal.