Lovable Leo

Dog mom Terri Maruca showers her English bulldog with love

Krystal Ramirez

Growing up, I always wanted a dog. My parents would say, “Terri, you’re allergic to dogs.” [Then] I met my boyfriend, and he had dogs all of his life. He kept telling me, “We have to get a dog.” And I’d say, “You know I’m allergic.” So I went to the allergist, and turns out I’m not allergic to dogs. … Now it’s funny to watch my parents with [Leo]. They kept telling me I could never have one; now they’re obsessed with him.

I never expected I would spend so much money on an animal. … He did have a gigantic first birthday party, and he had a step-and-repeat and a red carpet. It was [called] Leo’s Pawty. We had party favors and cakes, and we rented out a doggy day care and a whole big room. [There were] 17 dogs there. … Some people say, “You might be a little crazy, Terri.” But, I don’t have kids, so …

We did take Leo’s sperm, and we saved it in case we want to have another little Leo. We pay every quarter for his sperm to be frozen.

Krystal Ramirez

He doesn’t like other dogs. He loves humans to no end. … He’s very intrigued and nosy about everything. There’s one dog, Lucy, a basset hound, in the neighborhood. He sees her and they go and they give each other a kiss, but that’s it.

He’s a special, special character. He’s so loving and so smart. He’s probably not the most well-behaved dog. Some of that’s because of me. I’m not the sternest. But I think part of it is I’m still learning how to be a dog mom. And I don’t know how to say no. … I’m not a disciplinarian yet. I wonder if it would suck to be a real parent or not?

Pet: Leonidas, English bulldog

Age: 4

Pet’s Favorite Pastimes: Playing with his red ball at day care, saying “hi” to neighbors taking out the trash and trying to chew a formidable, unchewable toy—The Egg

Owner: Terri Maruca, senior vice president of public relations at
Kirvin Doak