TV’s Sue Sylvester dishes on her best buds Georgie, Olivia, Riley and Greta

By Cynthia Wang
January 20, 2010 11:00 AM

She may play conniving cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester, the great intimidator at Glee’s McKinley High, but in real life Jane Lynch is just a sucker for a big ol’ belly rub.

“My dog Olivia is now growling at me because I’m not rubbing her enough,” Lynch – who’s proud pet mom to 10-year-old lhasa apso Olivia, 7-year-old Wheaten terrier Georgie, 16-year-old gray tabby Greta, and 15-year-old red tabby Riley – told as she scratched in some quality time with her gang. “Greta just jumped on the bed, and Olivia could care less, and then Riley just hides under the bed. I’ll go weeks without seeing him. He’s been like that for 14 years. He looks at me like, ‘Who are you? What do you want?’ “

When Lynch, 49, isn’t home snuggling with her furry brood, she’s out playing at the local dog park, or letting her dogs climb all over outdoor restaurant tables (Sue Sylvester would be appalled).

“I love the way [the dogs] interact with each other,” says Lynch. “You can tell something about a person by the way they deal with their dog, and if they’re in a dog park, that usually means that they care about them.”

Lynch may love dog and people-watching at the dog park, but she has to keep a close watch on Olivia and Georgie, lest bad things happen. “I have one dog who’s a bit of a mental case and I have to keep my eye on her so she won’t get in a fight because her first instinct when she gets scared is, ‘Attack!’ ”

Read about more about Jane Lynch in the new issue of PEOPLE, on stands now.

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