Name: Kelly Roman
Where you and your dog live: New York City
Your current age: 26
Your age when you got your dog: 19
What do you do?: Male Model Agent @ Wilhelmina Models
Dog’s name: Lola
Dog’s age: 7
Lola was 8 weeks old when I got her. She is a Yorkie. I got her in Puerto Rico, so I like to call her a ‘Yoricua’ (aka Boricua). I was down in Puerto Rico for a long weekend during spring break with my mom; we were in San Juan shopping when we passed a boutique dog shop with a huge old antique bird cage in the window and a tiny little Yorkie with a pink bow in her hair. We obviously had to go in and hold her. It was instant love and for the next 2 weeks I could not stop thinking about her and would call the store every day to see if she was still there. I thought there was no way I could have a dog in my new NYC apartment at 19 while going to college and living with 3 other girls. But, I had to have her. My dad went down to PR shortly after us and when he came back he surprised me with her!!! It was the best day of my life!
Why did you want a dog?
My roommate and I would always say how cool it would be to have our own dog but never thought about it realistically. I grew up with dogs so I always knew I wanted one at some point. It was definitely more fate than a want. I wasn’t actively looking to get a dog – I saw her and we fell in love.
How has having a dog changed your life?
Having a dog is kind of like having a baby. Especially for a 19 year old. At first it was really hard trying to manage school and training a puppy. I would often be stressed that I couldn’t handle it. Now, Lola is just a part of me, I couldn’t imagine life without her. She is my everything. I would recommend everyone to get a dog young, it really teaches you how to be selfless and how to take care of something besides yourself. You also get a buddy for life!
How do/did you deal with having a dog in your twenties, may it be now or previously? What is/was your daily routine? Any hard times? Unique characteristics about your dog?:
At first, it was really difficult but she was perfect and I was so determined to make it work. Now, she is a part of my everyday routine. If she isn’t there I feel thrown off and empty. I like to have my mornings with her since I work all day, so I wake up, she eats while I get ready and then we go on a nice morning walk together. I also make sure no matter what I have going on that I come home after work to play with her or walk her. On the weekends I take her everywhere (walks, park, bars, supermarket, friends’ houses, etc.).
What are some of your favorite things to do with your dog?
I love when my boyfriend and I throw her in the backpack and bike ride to the park. Spend the whole day at the park where she can run around with everyone or just be chill and relax on the blanket with us. She really is a part of the crew. Our little mascot! I also love taking her back to her hometown. Every time I go to Puerto Rico I take her with me! You can just tell it’s her favorite place in the world. She loves running on the beach!!
Does anyone help you take care of your dog while at work or school?
My boyfriend is the best! He has fully adopted Lola as his own. She is his dog, and they are in love! I am so lucky he takes her everywhere with him all day. I also have the most amazing friends that when he is away or busy will take care of her.