Bryce Dallas Howard plays a lovable puppy in her upcoming film A Dog's Way Home

By Alexia Fernandez
January 09, 2019 09:58 AM

Bryce Dallas Howard‘s latest role is sure to warm your heart.

In a PEOPLE exclusive clip, the 37, voices the adorable Bella — a rescue dog who finds love with her owner, Lucas. The dog, played by a puppy named baby Bella, or BB for short, will steal audiences’ hearts with her energetic personality.

“Lucas and I would play the best games,” Bella explains in a comedic montage that sees her chasing a ball, chewing shoes and other shenanigans.

“We’d play ‘get the ball.’ We’d play ‘stop.’ We’d play ‘don’t chew shoes,'” she says. “And there was my favorite game of all.”

As Bella sits by Lucas (Jonah Hauer-King) he turns to her and asks, “What? What do you want?”

Coming to a realization, he turns to the sandwich on his desk and rips off a piece of cheese.

Baby Bella as Bella in A Dog’s Way Home

“Oh, do you want a tiny piece of cheese?” he asks her while extending the piece to her.

Bella takes it and licks his fingers. “‘Tiny piece’ of cheese filled me with such a strong feeling like I was safe and happy and warm — all at once. It was love.”

In an interview with PEOPLE in this week’s issue, the film’s director Charles Martin Smith says BB created quite a raucous on set.

“She licked actor Jonah Hauer-King, and these big red welts appeared,” he shares. “He was allergic. I let her lick my hand, and I got welts too. That little dog was lethal to be around!”

A Dog’s Way Home is in theaters Jan. 11.