The Mentalist & Mind Reader With His Dogs Milo & Tigo
By The Get Leashed Doggy Style Team
Typical tricks on Doggy Style sets include shake paw, roll over, and for showboaters, the occasional play dead. Mind reading during this shoot was definitely a first for us! Bobby Motta is as real as they come; a down to earth, welcoming person who happens to be super passionate about dogs and yes, is a professional mentalist. We caught up with him in his Toronto home to meet his partners in crime: the OG of the house, Milo, and the GQ dog, Tigo. Between his shows, family life, and dedication to dog training, things can be chaotic. Read on to see why he wouldn’t have it any other way.
Please tell us about yourself, your profession, and what a typical work day is like.
I’m a thrill seeking, ambitious, focus driven, not-so-normal 45-year-old. As an artist I fall under the category of strange and quirky with a love and need for human connection. My career path has always been in the sales field so I have developed a decent understanding of interpersonal skills which has helped me in my connection with those who I perform for. Over the past 15 years, my career has been my hobby which falls under the umbrella of magic. I am a mentalist and a consultant. My typical day consists of writing new material, rehearsing and prop building. My evenings are show time. Weekends are show packed along with my regular running dinner theater show which has been ongoing for the last six years.
Please tell us a bit about your dogs. How did they come into your life? Is there a story behind their names or particular breeds?
Milo is my Chinese Crested. He is 15 years old, blind and deaf but is still in good condition aside from being really old. He is the first of the dogs in my marriage. I have always had a soft spot for the furless creatures. Most just say gross when seeing him which makes me love him more. It was 15 years ago that I was on a lunch break at a local pet shop and happened to see him behind the window and instantly fell in love. When I called my wife and told her, she said, “bring him home!!!” To be honest, I don’t remember how we settled on the name Milo but I do know that the other name we contemplated calling him was Q-tip since he only has hair his head and tail. He’s been such an amazing part of our life. Tigo is my 2-year-old Doberman Pinscher. This breed has been one of my favorites. Growing up I had a love for working dogs and also was a trainer at a dog training school. Tigo comes from a line of award winning Dobermans called “Gatehouse Dobermans”. Maura is the owner. They specialize in the European bloodline, which is bigger than the American Doberman. Also they have an amazing reputation for breeding for temperament, which is important to us since we have small children in the house. Tigo has been my ultimate dog. I’ve owned and trained many dogs and he has been the easiest dog for me to train.
How would you describe your personal style?
I personally wouldn’t categorize myself under one style. The words I often hear people use to describe me are edgy and urban. I love a plain t-shirt with a pair of biker jeans with some accessories but when I need to dress it up I love rocking a sweet suit and a piece from my watch collection. My wife would say my sense of style is… expensive. I don’t think it’s expensive enough!
How would you describe the look and feel of your home?
I would call the feel of my home cozy chaos. It always feels like there is a lot going on at any time of the day. At present, my oldest daughter has moved on but I still have three kids, two dogs and of course my wife sharing our four bedroom Toronto townhome. The chaos can get very loud sometimes but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
What does your ideal weekend look like?
Weekends are show time for me. I perform four shows a weekend at my dinner theater show in Vaughan and I also perform privately and can often be found hosting a fundraiser or charity event. Between shows we try to take it slow on the weekends and I emphasize “try” because that’s nearly impossible with three kids. I guess to sum it up, an ideal weekend would be one where my Friday and Saturday are filled with shows ended off with a Sunday morning brunch with my family, followed by a long play session with Tigo. Sundays used to be training days for Tigo and I at Working K-9 with the best trainer in Canada, Tony Pallotta who I have to thank for showing me the most modern and effective way to train working dogs. I can only thank him for how well trained Tigo has become.
What inspires you?
People. I find inspiration in so many things it’s hard to put weight on one thing in particular. I’m inspired by the sheer fact that we exist. The unknown certainty of what’s next, what’s beyond this. I’m inspired by the understanding that happiness is living in the now and making every moment count and not being stuck on the destination.
Finally, can you leave us with a funny story about Tigo or Milo?
Every day we have funny moments with our dogs. Like Tigo farting as he walks up the stairs or Milo (who just recently became blind) bumping his way through the house. There was a time where I was certain someone stole my wallet and after frantically searching for hours all it took was a walk to the park with then 6 month old Tigo and his “release” proved who the culprit was. Never leave a piece of tasty hide in reach of a dog… lesson learned. Needless to say no credit cards or bills were salvaged from the wreckage.