After living in a New York City apartment that did not allow pets, the Pitch Perfect actress found her BFF Rocky immediately after moving to Los Angeles
That’s all I grew up with. Adorable, but at times cranky and mischievous, cats named Casey and Boots. They would run away from us when we got home and occasionally grace my mom and dad and sister with their presence (usually around breakfast or dinner time, go figure…). I loved them both dearly, but always felt like something was missing from our bond. I desperately wanted a dog.
So I moved away and went to N.Y.C. and would walk by the pet store on Steinway Street in Astoria, Queens, almost every day after my auditions, just staring at the puppies in the window. I would go in occasionally if I couldn’t take it anymore and once fell in love with a dachshund puppy, I even named her Layla. We would hug and I would pet her almost every day for a week. It seemed like destiny had brought us together, but alas, there was one thing standing in our way: My landlord didn’t allow pets, or dogs in particular, that is.
One day around Christmas I lied that I had won a puppy in a Christmas raffle at a party. Lying is never good, but it seemed like it was my only shot. Still, she said no way, and I cried my little broken heart to sleep. I vowed to get a dog the next year.
So, I moved to sunny L.A. and it seemed that everywhere embraced dogs: apartments, hotels, even restaurants! I was in puppy heaven! I got online and started googling puggle [pug/beagle mixes] puppies. Before I knew it, I was speaking with a lovely lady in Arkansas who had just had a litter and was arranging for my little Rocky to be flown to California. I always thought I would rescue, but after speaking with her, those pups needed homes, too, and I was ready to be a dog mom! That was nine years ago, and Rocky and I are pretty inseparable.
He brings me so much joy and comfort and love every day. We go for hikes and walks and he is so full of personality. I taught him how to sit, stay, roll over, shake, speak and “take a load off” (which means to go lay down in a specific spot … usually on the bed, our extremely comfortable Serta mattress).
Rocky sleeps at the foot of our bed with us and we wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s actually more comfortable with him there! I am so happy when I see people taking care of animals and getting and receiving unconditional love from their pets.
The world needs more kindness and care right now, and owning a pet can bring true joy and comfort into any family’s life. I always say that if I couldn’t be an actor, I would just turn my home into a rescue shelter for dogs and raise and care for as many as I could. And that’s true.
My joy and comfort in life is when I come home from a long day, and my best friend Rocky is there, his tail wagging and his big eyes staring up at me saying, “I love you, mom,” and also “Got anything to eat?”