Glen A. Larson's concept of the lead character's ability to manifest into the body of an animal stalker posed creative solutions to the production team. Using a "really alive black panther cat", or a "bird", or a "snake", for the actor's transition was a study in discipline for cast and crew. The production designer was required to coordinate--with the director, set decorator, stunt supervisor, the cat's wrangler and with the actor--every instance the script called for using any of the animal(s) involved. Location filming was most difficult, but shooting on a soundstage allowed for more control of the animals being utilized. When a cobra was required in one script, the entire set's perimeter floor and wall had to be sealed in order to prevent the cobra from escaping. A barricade low (2'0") wall was placed in the open end of the set in order to seal the entire stage. The camera crew had to lift their equipment into the interior of the setting to just set up filming the action with the snake. The snake's trainer--or "wrangler"--supervised the animal's movement while still being able to maintain control of it.
Creator Glen A. Larson briefly resurrected the Jonathan Chase character for a crossover with his series NightMan (1997). In that episode, "Manimal"'s traditional practical-effects transformation was abandoned in favor of a CGI sequence.