John Leguizamo Got His 'Lovable' Poodle Through Robin Williams

Actor John Leguizamo got his poodle Chewbacca after a tip from the late Robin Williams

John Leguizamo‘s dog Chewbacca is a fuzzy, ‘lovable’ pup — with a surprising connection to Robin Williams.

Leguizamo found Chewbacca — nicknamed Chewy — on a tip from the late comedian.

“I got him from this amazing breeder, it was Robin Williams’ breeder,” Leguizamo, one of our Sexiest Men Alive 2016, tells PEOPLE. “I went to his house and he had these big, stand up poodles, he said, [Leguizamo perfectly imitating Williams’ voice] ‘You’ve got to get these dogs, they’re incredible.’ ”

“I went to his breeder and she said that [Chewy] is the cuddliest dog that she’s ever seen — he’s lovesick. I said perfect, my kids will love him to death. He’s the perfect dog.”

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Leguizamo says he was surprised by Chewy’s wisdom.

“You know, poodles are the second smartest breed. His intelligence is amazing, you can really talk to him and he really pays attention,” Leguizamo says.

“I call him a therapy dog as a joke, but he really is our therapy dog. Everyone takes a little time with him, and whatever tensions or problems they have just go away. My son sits with him on the floor — my wife does the same thing — and just looks into his eyes, and all of a sudden they feel better.”

And Chewy isn’t shy about showing affection.

“He’s just such a lovable dog,” Leguizamo says. “He loves to hug, he loves to lean on you. He’s very co-dependent, I think that’s the best part.”

“I’ve really fallen in love with this breed. This temperament is really perfect for me. If you want to roughhouse he’ll do it too. But he doesn’t destroy all the furniture.”

For more from this year’s Sexiest Man Alive — and to see who else made the cut — pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE on newsstands now

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