September 19, 2011 01:10 PM

When Jenna Dewan Tatum had to pack up for Chicago to shoot the new NBC series The Playboy Club, she couldn’t leave her home in L.A. without taking a little piece of it with her. So the actress brought along a stowaway: her 4-year-old miniature Japanese Spitz, Meeka, who’s thrilled to be on a set for the first time. Read about that and the rest of a week in the life of Jenna Dewan Tatum in her Doggie Diary.

Generally, Mondays have super early call times. As in, 4:30 a.m. When we get onto set, I go into hair and makeup and Meeka comes with me. She sits on my lap while I get my hair done, and she really sits there and watches us do it. It’s the most amazing thing. She’s the best dog. When the makeup artist goes to apply mascara, Meeka licks her hand. We don’t know why she does it, but Meeka gives hand kisses every time I get mascara put on. That’s our morning routine.

My other dog, a pit bull mix named Lulu, is in L.A. with Chan [her husband Channing Tatum]. I had a video call with him today, and when I said hi to her, she turned her head at the sound of my voice. I’m such a mom to these dogs; I hate leaving them. I hate it! When Chan’s not there, we have a friend or different dog sitters watch Lulu. I’ll call them and be frantic, asking, “How is she? Did she go to the dog park? Did she get along with the other dogs? Is she eating?” They’ll tell me to calm down because she’s fine. The dog walker gives grades, and the first time she went to the park, Lulu got a D. But now, she’s as happy as can be, and for the first time today, she got an A. I was so excited.

Every now and then I have a day off. I had a day off today, but I still had a fitting, so I took Meeka with me. We like to give her old bunny tails from the show, ones that we’re not using anymore. They’re her favorite toy in the entire world. She was swinging the bunny tail around while I was trying things on – having the time of her life, basically. Everybody loves her, giving her kisses and treats and toys all the time.

Amber [Heard] also has a dog with her on set, a little Yorkie named Pistol. And since Meesha’s kind of a pack dog, we thought they were going to be best friends right away, but we put them in the hair and makeup trailer and all they did was growl at each other. But now they play together, so we took them for a walk today on the little yard on set. And then it was back to my trailer for Meeka while I did a couple more scenes. She has a bed, her blankie, every toy and bone imaginable. It’s no longer Jenna’s trailer – it’s Meeka’s trailer. She was particular about things, so I was worried about bringing her on set, but as soon as I put her in the trailer, it was like she was born to do it. It’s like she’s the movie star.

I’ve been walking her at night around Chicago, and I’m seeing actual live bunnies in the middle of downtown Chicago. Straight up. There are high rises. No wilderness near me. So I’m thinking, This is weird. We’re about to premiere a TV show about bunnies and the Playboy Club, and I’m seeing actual bunnies. Is this a sign? Nobody else has seen these bunnies. But Meeka is crazy about them. They’re way faster than she is but she chases them all.

Catch Jenna Dewan Tatum as Bunny Janie on The Playboy Club, premiering Monday, Sept. 19 at 10 p.m.

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