Austin Reed isn’t your typical journalist. He doesn’t report on politics, sports or the latest scandals in Hollywood.
Instead, Reed focuses on pets.
The 28-year-old journalist is host of “Pet TV USA,” a weekly show that focuses on pets of the Central Valley. But instead of sitting behind a desk, Reed reports on pets from a state-of-the-art studio in Whitie’s Pets.
Among the sea of colorful fish, rowdy birds and furry hamsters, you’ll find Reed recording “Pet TV USA” on Thursday afternoons.
The 30-minute show airs at 8 a.m. on My Central Valley, KAIL-TV in Fresno, as well as on KWVT-LD in Portland, Oregon.
During “Pet TV USA,” Reed interviews special guests from local adoption and rescue centers like Central California SPCA and Valley Animal Center — including pets available for adoption.
He also shares facts and information on a variety of animals living at Fresno Chaffee Zoo.
His dream to become a journalist started while living in Portland in the late 1990s.
“I had a fake TV station in my basement,” Reed said with a laugh. “I was fascinated with TV — with news.”
At age 17, while working at a local radio station, Reed received a full-time job at KPTV FOX 12 in Portland.
“I learned so much at KPTV,” he said.
Eventually, Reed moved to New York to try his luck at becoming an actor. His résumé also includes being a spokesperson for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (he was diagnosed with CF as a toddler) and working at WOWK-TV in West Virginia, 5NEWS in Fayetteville, Arkansas, KOB-TV in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and KOBI-TV in Medford, Oregon.
In fact, Reed met his wife, Amanda, at a bachelor auction in Medford. It was a benefit for Sanctuary One, a 55-acre farm in Jacksonville, Oregon.
It was obvious: Both of them loved animals. (In fact, Amanda is a veterinary technician at Bullard Marks Veterinary Medical Center.)
Reed and his wife returned to the Central Valley — the Madera Ranchos, to be exact — to start a family. ( Fun fact: Reed and his wife welcomed twin daughters, Maddison and MacKenzie, on Wednesday, May 25).
Subsequently, he started working as a host and emcee for the Fresno Grizzlies. But he couldn’t stop thinking of ways to combine his passion for journalism and animals.
In February, Reed started brainstorming with Joe Ozier — a professional dog behavior trainer who owns Way of a Dog in Fresno.
“It was just him and I,” Ozier said as he looked at Reed.
Like Reed, his love for animals is evident. He rescued his sidekick, Jimmy, from Animal Rescue of Fresno. He participates in videos, which demonstrates his incredible ability to listen.
The self-proclaimed “Dog Fixer-er” is also a musician and author of “Shea’s Lounge,” a children’s book that published in 2014.
To fill the roster for “Pet TV USA,” Reed and Ozier are joined by Carlos Smyth.
Smyth is a videographer and editor who used to own True Image Studios, but switched to working for the Fresno Grizzlies at the same time as Reed.
When Reed asked him to join “Pet TV USA,” he didn’t hesitate to jump on board.
Smyth and Reed said their goal is “to give a voice to animals” by connecting with the community.
Speaking of the community, Reed said a portion of proceeds earned from “Pet TV USA” are donated to the local chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Sponsored by Lemoore True Value Hardware, CCSPCA and Whitie’s Pets, “Pet TV USA” officially launched on Saturday, May 14.
The second episode aired on Saturday, May 21 with special guests from CCSPCA. The third episode aired a couple of weeks ago. (You can watch episodes at www.PetTV.us.)
In addition to Fresno and Portland, “Pet TV USA” airs at noon on KRHT-LP in Redding.
▪ Submit pictures of your pets to PetTVNow@gmail.com.