David Hinckley....Stern has a love hate thing with him. Loves him when he writes amazing things Hates him when he writes non amazing things http://www.nydailynews.com/entertai...d-rotten-pets-animal-lovers-article-1.1311936 By David Hinckley / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Beth Stern's 'Spoiled Rotten Pets' will take a good-humored look at how much we love our cats, dogs ... and pigs The host of the Nat Geo Wild series, premiering April 20, is a life-long animal lover whose family called their shelter dogs 'muttigrees.' Beth Sternâ€™s â€œSpoiled Rotten Petsâ€ hasnâ€™t even gone on the air yet, and already the lines are forming. â€œAs soon as people heard what I was doing,â€ Stern says, â€œthey started coming up to me and telling me about how they spoil their own pets, and why I should do their story on the show.â€ Stern finds it all good-humored and amusing. Now. That could change once â€œSpoiled Rotten Petsâ€ premieres Saturday night at 9 on Nat Geo Wild. The furry little secret behind this show is that spoiling pets isnâ€™t the exception. Itâ€™s an American way of life. â€œSpoiled Rotten Petsâ€ isnâ€™t just about people who feed their cats on store-bought roast chicken or let their dogs sleep on the bed. This is a show about people who keep lizards and snakes and ferrets and turtles. Itâ€™s about people who hold wedding ceremonies for their dogs and put diapers on their ducks so the ducks can walk around in the house. Itâ€™s a show where, on the first episode, the host kisses a pig. â€œMy husband,â€ Stern muses, â€œmay kill me when he sees that one.â€ Her husband, for those who havenâ€™t been keeping up, is radio personality Howard Stern â€” who is not known for maintaining discreet silence if he has an opinion about something. In truth, though, Beth adds, â€œHoward is great about animals. He loves them, too, and heâ€™s been totally supportive about what Iâ€™m doing.â€ She has also been an animal advocate for what she says is basically her whole life. â€œWhen I was growing up, we always had a dog and two cats and all the rest, like guinea pigs,â€ she says. â€œOur dogs were shelter dogs â€” muttigrees, we called them. â€œMy mom would show me how to feed them and take care of them.â€ And were they spoiled rotten? â€œI donâ€™t think we thought of them as spoiled,â€ she says. â€œThey were just part of the family.â€ More recently, Stern has been a spokeswoman for the North Shore Animal League. So when Nat Geo Wild came knocking with this idea for a show, she says, she had â€œzeroâ€ hesitation. â€œI couldnâ€™t believe it,â€ she says. â€œItâ€™s a channel I already watch all the time, so all I could think was how much fun would this be.â€ While the showâ€™s title suggests pulling back the curtain on some tiny group of people who have lost all perspective, she says thatâ€™s not how her subjects will come off. â€œI think most of us spoil our pets in some way,â€ she says, â€œand I donâ€™t think most of us see anything wrong or unusual about it.â€ On Saturdayâ€™s opening episode, Stern visits a couple who own two pigs. More specifically, they own two rescue pigs that were given up by their earlier owner when they grew out of the small-and-cute stage. Thatâ€™s a problem with pigs,â€ says Stern. â€œThey grow big, and a lot of people arenâ€™t ready for it.â€ Their current owners were. In fact, theyâ€™re so devoted to â€œthe girlsâ€ that Sternâ€™s mission in this segment is persuading them to spend one night alone. This isnâ€™t exactly an exercise in trauma or survivalism for the pigs, who are driven to a pig spa where they get a bath and a spritz of pig cologne. They also get a facial with a toothbrush. Nothing like a good exfoliation to make a pig feel brand-new. Stern says she liked the people, but it was the pigs that really impressed her. â€œTheyâ€™re so smart,â€ she says. â€œAfter this I canâ€™t even look at bacon.â€ She says she was a little hesitant at first about filming the dog wedding ceremony, which was held in New York and involved multiple â€œcouples.â€ â€œI donâ€™t want to do anything that might seem like Iâ€™m making fun of anyone,â€ she says. â€œI donâ€™t want anyone to look silly or frivolous. â€œBut when they explained this ceremony to me, that itâ€™s all rescue dogs and itâ€™s a way of raising money for rescue awareness, it felt fun and kind of sweet.â€ The Sterns themselves are between pets at the moment. Their English bulldog died last summer, â€œwhich was very hard,â€ and she says that perhaps thanks in part to this show, sheâ€™s just starting to come around. â€œI got up one morning just last week and said, I think Iâ€™m ready,â€ she says. â€œBut Howard said heâ€™s not quite there yet. When he is, weâ€™ll go to a rescue.â€ Meanwhile, Stern says, she has already gotten more than enough leads to do more episodes if the first run is a success. Most of her subjects so far are in the Northeast, and sheâ€™d love to branch out to places where people spoil even more kinds of pets. â€œItâ€™s really a show about how much people love their animals,â€ she says. â€œI think even people who donâ€™t have pets can appreciate it.â€ There are pretty much only two kinds of stories you wonâ€™t see on â€œSpoiled Rotten Pets.â€ â€œI wouldnâ€™t do shows on people who own animals like big cats, because I donâ€™t think they belong in captivity that way,â€ Stern says. â€œThey belong on preserves or in the wild.â€ As for the other thing she wonâ€™t be doing, well, that has a little backstory. â€œWe were having dinner one night at the house of one of Howardâ€™s business associates,â€ she recounts. â€œThey had a large, lovely home, and I asked if they would give us a tour. â€œWe got to the first big room and there was a cat curled up on the sofa, just bathed in the sunlight. And I thought, well, thatâ€™s nice. â€œWe got to the next room and there was another sofa and another cat, curled up asleep. â€œSo I went over to pet it. And thatâ€™s when I relized it was stuffed. They had taken all their cats who died over the years and had them stuffed and placed around the house. â€œI love my pets sometimes more than life itself, but thatâ€™s where I draw a line. Howard couldnâ€™t get me out of there fast enough.â€ Show her a happy home where the owners peel grapes for their basset hound, though, and she could stay there all day. Just like the rest of us.